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Manva Dhaba Becomes a Hit in Naxal Affected Dantewada

Dantewada DM has started an eatery run by women SHGs of the district.
Indian Masterminds Stories

In Dantewada, one of the worst Naxalite affected districts in the country, women empowerment is being taken up on a priority basis. Sustainable livelihood opportunities are being created especially for them in order to strengthen their financial position. In line with this objective, the district administration has helped open an eatery for the tribal women of the area to run. The initiative was kicked off in the month of May and the dhaba is already becoming very popular among the locals and tourists visiting the district. Named Manva Dhaba, it is run and managed by women SHGs.

LIVELIHOOD

The ‘Narva Garwa Ghurwa Bari Yojana’ scheme of the Chhattisgarh government focuses on boosting rural economy by providing various employment opportunities. It signifies four main symbols in Chhattisgarh. Narva means river, Garwa means animals and their day care centres, Ghurwa means manure or fertilizers and Bari means garden where vegetables and fruits are grown.

Where steps are being taken by the state government in providing employment opportunities at the village level through gauthans or animals day care centre, the district administration saw another opportunity which could help the tribal women immensely.

Speaking to Indian Masterminds, DM Dantewada, Vinit Nandanwar said, “Earlier, the tribal women used to engage only in agricultural activities and other household chores. However, we thought of giving them additional opportunity to run an eatery and, that too, on a national highway. We identified a gauthan situated on Dantewada and Bijapur national highway. On that road, there was no eatery or dhaba. Hence, it seemed like a good opportunity to help these tribal women earn decent revenue.”

DM Dantewada Vinit Nandanwar eating food at the Manva Dhaba

MY DHABA

The initiative kicked off in the month of May in Bade Karli village on Geedam-Bijapur Road after the district administration generated funds from the District Mineral Foundation (DMF). The eatery was started by the name of ‘Manva Dhaba’ (My Dhaba) on a 3000 sq ft area, right next to the gauthan.

Manva Dhaba

The beneficiaries for this project were 10 women from the ‘Boss Bodin’ self-help Group (SHG) who are also associated with the gauthan. Mr. Nandanwar said, “Businesses are started after checking the demand and supply of a particular product or service. As this eatery was the first one in the area, the demand was very high. The only thing we wanted to keep in mind was the quality of the food and the hygiene.”

The dhaba serves both vegetarian and non-veg food, and on peak days, the revenue reaches 20,000-25,000. Since the inauguration of the eatery, the SHG women have made around Rs 8 lakh and is now planning to start tiffin service as well.

Each member who is now associated with the dhaba is earning around Rs 5000-6000 per month and is moving to a more sustainable life. Mr. Nandanwar said, “The money which is earned by these women goes to the betterment of their families. Education, health and other things improve as and when the person starts earning more. This initiative is, hence, breaking stereotypes as this sector was once dominated by their counterparts.”


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