In a country of 1.3 billion people, making ends meet is a daily ritual for many underprivileged people. Not many can come out on top in spite of braving all hardships. But India’s diversity is such that in every sphere of life, some beacons shine bright to pave the way for others.
We recount below the travails of Hazrat Bi Shaikh, who suffered at the hands of her in-laws and fate but took everything in her stride to survive all the difficulties and make a secure life for herself and her family. She showed compassion in helping 10 of her women friends in securing a good life for themselves.
Hazrat Bi is a 43-year old lady who came to Behrampada in Mumbai when she was a young girl.
She married when she was 19 years of age. Her woes started when her in-laws started making life hell for her. She gave birth to three daughters one of which died at a young age. Since then she has suffered a series of agonising incidences. First, she lost her husband and her in-laws mistreated her, forcing her to move to her mother’s place to receive shelter. Her elder daughter died leaving her infant kids behind. These kids, her sole surviving daughter and Hazrat Bi herself needed looking after. Hazrat Bi was determined to face life’s challenges head on. She worked as a maid to contribute to the family’s income. Later she worked as a tailor, stitching for people in the neighbourhood. In bargain, she gained steady clients and experience as a good tailor. Subsequently, with her tailoring experience, she tied up with an NGO to make bags. She not only learned to stand on her own feet but also helped 10 other women stand on theirs by working with her in her bag-making business. Unfortunately, for Hazrat Bi, after the ill-treatment by her in-laws and her travails thereafter fate struck a cruel blow in the year2013 again when she was diagnosed with cancer. With treatment consisting of surgery and chemotherapy, she overcame cancer. Fortunately, her health improved and she is quite stable now and has made the bold decision to continue her bag-making business. Without losing an iota of courage and with steely determination, she singlehandedly runs the bag-making business with her 10 women supporters, making a grand success of it.
Buoyed by the success of her bag-making business, she has set out on a goal of growing her business to ensure that she and her supporters can aspire for a good life. She needs capital to buy new printing machines for printing on bags. She also needs working capital to buy raw materials. She wants to take a loan to help her grow her business.
While we empathise with Hazrat Bi’s state of affairs we also extol her courage, determination and fortitude to face all the hardships fate threw at her. Not only does she look after herself and her family, she has also shown the way to 10 of her friends to aspire for a good life. This act of kindness on her part speaks volumes for her commitment to fellow human beings.
We have a unique way of approving loans. We post stories such as Hazrat Bi’s on our sister website www.doright.in. We want you to read the stories and if they touch your heart we want you to Salaam the person behind the story. Your Salaam will help us extend a loan to the deserving applicant.