Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Loan that got her land back.......ALONG WITH CONFIDENCE

Dadar is a small village in vicinity of Alwar, district headquarter and industrial city of Rajasthan. Jatavs living in a secluded colony in this village are listed amongst scheduled caste in India. Condition of most of the members of this community is bad. Most of the members work in village as daily wage labor during the agriculture season and rest of the time they work in Alwar as construction labors. Women join their husbands in agriculture work during agriculture season and rest of the time they are either free or busy with their household chores. Addiction of smoking, chewing tobacco and country made liquor amongst men makes condition of this community worst.

Krishna is a 45 years old woman from Jatav community in this village. Krishna’s husband works as construction labor in Alwar city. Both manage to earn around Rs 2000/- monthly. She has two are daughters and a son who is studying in class 9th of village government school. One of the two daughters is married and another is studying in class 7th. Krishna owns a total of 4 beegha land which was mortgaged 7 years back to a local money lender. She took loan of………. for the treatment of her another son who suffered APPENDICITIS. He was given treatment in Alwar and then taken to Jaipur but his life could not be saved. His treatment forced family to mortgage their 4 beeghas of land for Rs.50000/ and sell the paltry jewellery that Krishna had. Krishna could never arrange enough money to get her land back. The loan though was interest free, gave moneylender the right over produce of the farm which was around Rs.16000 yearly. Without agriculture income Krishna’s family was forced to live life of deprivation, as income from wage labor is very irregular and insufficient for a family of five members to survive.
Ibtada is working on women’s empowerment through Self Help Groups in the area for around 10 years. Ibtada has formed a federation of 11 clusters called Savera Mahila Munch and each cluster is again composed of 8-10 groups each.
Some women of her community wanted to start a Self help group that was facilitated by Ibtada, an NGO that was working in this village for seven years. She attended training session for the formation of group and came to know about the benefits of the group. Her group named SEEMA started in Jan,2006.Group started with initial savings of 50 Rs from each member and had to meet every fortnight. Group was a member of Cluster named SHANTI and District level federation named Savera.Activities of this three tiered institution is facilitated by Ibtada.Members of the group discuss their problem and community issues in the meetings. An accountant keeps record of the groups and is paid by Cluster. Ibtada facilitates loans from bank to the Cluster which disburses them to the group according to their performances which is decided by regular meetings, attendances of the members and repayment of the loans. Krishna’s group started getting loans in 6 months.In last 2.5 years Krishna has taken 6 loans that amounts to 13700/- for various petty needs of her family. She paid all her monthly installment in time. Group charges 24% interest on the loan and 2% service charge that is send to cluster for payment of accountant.
This loan and its repayment gave Krishna confidence and She discussed about her mortgaged land in the meeting. Three other woman of the group also wanted loan to get their land unmortgaged. The issue was forwarded to Cluster meeting. Application of Krishna and other three women was than forwarded to IBTADA which persuaded bank to provide a loan for two years to the cluster.
Accountant of the group helped all women in preparation of documents of land. A loan of 13000/- was provided to Krishna for 15 months at the rate of 15% per annum.
Krishna got her ½ beegha land unmortgaged with this loan. She will pay back the amount in Equal monthly installments of Rs 955/-.She is hopeful and happy. She said that she will work harder to pay back the loan so that she can take another loan to unmortgage her rest of the land. She is brimming with confidence . She is thankful to ibtada and her group. Her reputation in her family has increased. Now she can take part in decision making as she is the one who represents her family in the group.

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