Thursday, July 27, 2017



 |  | BALANGIR | in Bhubaneswar
The Anchalik Saptahik Rabibar Bazar, the regional weekly market at Budelgumma in Mahalei panchayat in Deogaon block, is really a new type of weekly market with rooftop and sitting infrastructure.
Constructed with an assistance of Rs 26 lakh from Reliance Foundation and with villagers’ contribution, the weekly market has seating capacity for 126 sellers. The Reliance Foundation had started the nutrition garden concept in nine villages, namely, Haldipali, Rusuda, Debrimunda, Balarpali, Barla, Kuiabahal, Kukurkhai, ,Kundeimal, Sargipali, Babijore and Talbandh in 2012. In the Reliance Nutrition Garden (RNG), 14 varieties of vegetables were cultivated, which include tomato, brinjal, chili, ladies finger, radish, cauliflower and leaf vegetables, etc. After consumption, many villagers were left with huge surplus vegetables grown by them.
A meeting was called and all the nearby 40 villages were invited  attend to start a weekly market at Budelgumma. However, representatives of 20 villages turned up and it was decided to start a weekly market on Sunday. But, there was a weekly market already at Rusuda on Sunday.
“Initially, we faced opposition from the people there who were selling items. However, after much persuasion, the sellers there agreed and participated in our weekly market and the weekly market was started on  November 24, 2013 on an open space,” said Satya Budek of Budelgumma village.
“Earlier we used to go to weekly market at Tusura or at Upparjhar which was lying at a distance of 8km away from our village. The long distance discouraged women members from visiting the weekly market. Moreover, whatever amount is taken for purchase of vegetables and other needs, around 50 per cent of it was also spent on liquor or in other unproductive purposes. Also, we faced threats by anti social while returning from market,” he added.The total turnover of the market is around Rs 1.5lakh to Rs 2 lakh in the weekly market. While in the rainy season the turnover is less as it is more in festive occasion.
“Earlier I used to go a rural weekly market located in Boudh district crossing the river. It was tiring. However, after opening up the market I have opened my shop here and am selling around Rs 1,200- Rs Rs 2,500 per week. The sale goes up in the festive season. In the rainy season, the sale is low,” said a seller who deals in shoes and other items.
The opening of the market has increased vegetable cultivation in the area. Moreover, village youths who were migrating to far Tamil Nadu have stopped doing it. The economic conditions of the household have increased and the village boasts pucca house and 8- 10 vehicles. Earlier barely 8 to 10 households had a decent living. But after the land development, and Reliance Nutrition Garden and weekly market, the economic condition has improved and migration has reduced.
“Budelguma Haat has created space for local community to develop their entrepreneurship skill with respect and ownership.

The dependency level in buying daily needs of women has come down after the weekly haat . It has also saved their time and increased bonding among community,” said senior programme manager of Reliance Foundation Balangir Shudanshu Das.

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