When I reached her house in the evening, Rashmita Nayak was busy working on her sewing machine. This industrious lady does tailoring work to help her husband supplement the family. Her husband works in JK Paper Mill in Rayagada and earns about Rs.6000 every month; Rashmita earns between Rs.2000 and Rs.3000. They have a 2 year old son. She initially intended to purchase a low-smoke cook-stove but went on to purchase a solar lantern with the help of a Milaap loan almost 6-7 months back so as to help her business during blackouts. And since then, the lantern’s help has been indispensable.
Hitherto, she used an inverter light that dented their savings with increased electricity bills and high maintenance costs. Also, the inverter light wouldn't last for more than 6 months. With the help of the solar light, which has no additional costs associated with it, she can work continuously from morning till 9 pm. The intensity of the solar light is sufficient enough to let her work even during a blackout. She often uses it as a bed light for her young son when a blackout happens in the night. Her son too is so accustomed with the light, often he switches it on for his mother when a blackout occurs while she is working.