I traveled a little over 300 kilometers to meet Ukiben Kalubhai of Jay Mataji Mahila Mandal. This is a place called Gandhidham, and it is found in the Kutchh District which is in the north-western part of Gujarat. Unfortunately, at the time I was unable to meet the group leader of this Mahila Mandal - Sajna Babubhai, as some of these women have day jobs and run their business after coming back from work. But I certainly was glad to meet Ukiben, as she had quite the inspiring story. She is an inspiring woman and was very keen on telling me what her business was about and how she managed it.
Ukiben buys a variety of items from a wholesale market from the town like chuddi (bangles), bindi, powder, make-up kits, and clothes. She then sells these items on rounds around her village. She has been at this business right from when she got married, which is almost 15 years ago. She also owns a small little grocery store close to her house where she sells basic everyday items. She has four daughters and one son. She single-handedly manages her entire household, as her husband is unpredictable and goes to work on occasional weekends.