A graduate of physics, Lalita Patil always wanted to be financially independent. She gave tuition and sold medicines for a pharmacy company but the work did not give her satisfaction.

“I did not feel like I was growing in my profession. I believed only running my own business would give me that feeling,” says the 37-year-old Maharashtra resident.

When her husband’s business began to fail, she turned her passion for cooking into a home tiffin business.

In 2016, she started Gharachi Athvan or ‘memories of home’ to offer simple yet delicious homemade food to students and working professionals living away from home.

She invested Rs 2,000 to purchase tiffin boxes and another Rs 500 to distribute leaflets for advertising. Today, her business clocks an annual revenue close to Rs 1 crore.

The lockdown created more awareness about her business, especially among outsiders who were stuck in the city and craved homemade food.

Lalita’s menu includes vegetarian and non-vegetarian thalis that come with roti, vegetables, dal, and dessert. She also offers dal khichdi and stand-alone food items priced between Rs 90 and Rs 180.

The venture has not only helped Lalita achieve her dreams, but also boosted her confidence.

“A woman working from home is always perceived as a homemaker. It is only when she steps beyond her doorstep and achieves something society deems ‘significant’ that her hard work is appreciated,”  she adds.

Today, Lalita has become a fearless entrepreneur who knows how to succeed in a business.