143rd recipient of help (livelihood bicycle – Organised by Prashant Neha Taneja, Gurgaon) :
Phaguni (21) – Domestic Help and Cook
Phaguni is originally from 24 Parganas in West Bengal; 3 years ago, her parents migrated to Gurgaon for a better chance at earning a livelihood for his family.
Phaguni’s father works at Gurgaon as Housekeeping staff. She accompanied them to Gurgaon in order to help the family in their hour of need. She has studied till the 9th standard, and now even she has started working in Gurgaon as a full time maid and part time cook to help her family make ends meet.
Around three months ago, Phaguni got married to Devovrat, who has also moved to Guargaon from west Bengal in search of a better living.
Phaguni reaches her workplace at 6 in the morning, and finishes work at around 8 in the evening. Phaguni’s husband walks with her to her workplace in the morning, which is approximately 3 kms from their home. And in the evening her mother in law walks her back to home. So that she be safe on the streets. On a bicycle, even though alone, she will be far safer and independent, and even reach faster.
During my conversation with them, husband and wife, I asked them if they have any plans of extending their family, having children; to which they clearly replied that they have got other liabilities for now, and till they first get free from them they will not plan to extend their family. I was happy to hear that this young working couple is mature and understands their responsibilities and their liabilities.
Since Phaguni is a cook, I asked her husband Devovrat, what is the best thing she cooks for him?
He remained silent for a while and then continued, shyly, “Sab accha hi banati hai… maine ek do baar khaya hai iske haath ka khaana. Subha bahut jaldi chali jati hai kaam par toh apne ghar par khana woh nahin banati hai.” (She cooks everything well, I have had it once or twice, since she leaves early in the morning, she does not do cooking at home.)
It made me wonder, less privileged people like Phaguni and Devovrat migrate from small villages to metro’s, to earn a livelihood. But, with better earnings and the better lifestyle that big cities can provide them, are these migrants really getting what they were expecting from the cities? Do cites live up to the promises they make in the minds of these migrants?
It’s a new beginning for Phaguni with Devovrat. We wish them a happy married life and a safe ride for her on her new cycle. This bicycle we donated to her will help her travel faster to her place of work and keep her safer on streets.
Thanks a ton to my colleague Nitin Gautam, who came forward willingly to finance this bicycle for Phaguni.
Through this humble deed I think we have added yet another member in the chain of the many donors who support Rakesh’s Bicycle Angels’ efforts to help less privileged people earn a better livelihood.
Rakesh Anand Bakshi and his donors’ (of Bicycle Angels), and their good work, is behind my own motivation for helping less privileged people in and around Gurgaon. And I hope to help many others like them in future as and when I am able.
– Prashant Neha Taneja (Gurgaon)
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