Smt Saroj Devi is a successful handicapped woman of Jai Ma Laxmi SHG in Petuaganj village of Rudauli block in Faizabad district. Saroj was very poor. She belonged to a landless family. There are four members in this family i.e. wife, husband, a daughter and a son. The government allotted a house under Lohia Avas Scheme. Saroj had studied up to BA. Both Saroj and her husband are handicapped. Each one is managing with one leg only. Both know tailoring work. Her SHG was formed three years before. After coming into the group Saroj has availed following financial assistance from the group:

  1. Rs 5,000 for a purchase of sewing machine for a husband who is doing tailoring work in Rudauli market.
  2. Rs 20,000 for opening parchoon (provision) shop at home which Saroj is managing.

With the surplus generated from these two income generation activities, Saroj has purchased two more sewing machines. She is also engaged in tailoring of ladies garments at home and also simultaneously looking after the parchoon shop. The family is able to earn between Rs 350 and Rs. 400 daily. Family is out of poverty and all the members are happy. Saroj, by example, has become a leader and motivating force for other SHGs and women in the village. She says boldly, “I have defeated our handicap as well as poverty by enjoying timely and needed assistance from my group which is running well”. Both the children of Saroj are getting an education in a good school.

C S Pandey and P S Mohanan, February 2019