“After my divorce, I moved back home. With a house of 12 people, I was teased for contributing nothing to the household.
I joined an SHG and there I learnt about chick rearing. With nothing in my hand, I took a loan of Rs. 20,000 and kickstarted my own business. I bought 350 chicks in 2011, but the birds got the ‘flu’ and 150 chicks died in that first year. It was a huge blow. Already in debt, I had to keep going.
I bought another 500 chicks and this time sought some expert advice on how to raise them the scientific way. 9 years on, I have diversified into different breeds of chicken, built a shed with a capacity for 30,000 chickens and earn 17,000Rs per month, which I use to invest in my niece’s education. Look who’s laughing now?” - Shafali Khatun, Kendua Village, Murshidabad, West Bengal