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Women can not only understand financial news and talk stocks at a dinner party, they have now become financially fluent and independent. Unnati joshi reports on an industry initiative
That women entrepreneurs have started making an impact on the Indian economy is a known fact. But it is the extent of the impact that successful women debated at a recent meeting of the FICCI Ladies’ Organisation. Actor Raveena Tandon set the tone, saying, “India’s GDP can increase from 16 per cent to 60 percent simply by allowing women to participate in the economy on par with men. Start-ups, therefore are the key to creating employment and Dyuti (a multi-level marketing business model that aims at creating sustainable women entrepreneurs) is expected to generate employment for women in the jewellery industry which is otherwise dominated by men.”
“The word Dyuti is synonymous with Goddess Lakshmi and it is an exclusive business model that has been designed to create entrepreneurial opportunities for women, who are successfully managing their households or jobs and want to earn some extra money”, explained Bela Badhalia, FLO governing body member who has conceptualised the initiative to convert multi-tasking homemakers into smart businesswomen.
You cannot choose to be financially dependent on a man and also call yourself a feminist. Kalyani Chawla, now Vice President, Marketing and Communication, Christian Dior couture, gave up her social comfort zone. “I have done diverse things in my life and that has been my biggest learning. Today at this stage and age, I am starting two businesses. One is a fashion website; it’s going to be launched by the end of this month and a silver business with my ex-husband, believe it or not. There are sides of me which are more than surprising. I left my marriage without a single penny of alimony from a very wealthy family that I was married into. My husband and I separated when my daughter was two-year-old. It was very difficult at that time. And I am very proud that I have brought her up without compromising on anything. That was how I started yet again. This is the reason that I feel I am invincible now. Although it’s a big word, but I feel it because I am financially independent,” said Kalyani.
Despite some basic changes in the status and role of women in the society, no society treats its women as well as its men. Women continue to suffer from diverse deprivations from kitchens to key-boards. Speaking on this, princess Diya Kumari of Jaipur said, “That’s a very sad state of affairs. It is going to take a while but I am sure that difference in remuneration is something that we need to work on. In my area, I haven’t really encountered it as yet. If it is there that’s it’s not fair at all.”
“Mentorship and guidance are tools that have the potential to help women entrepreneurs grow their business, and in some cases change their lives,” said FLO president Vinita Bimbhet, after the launch.
“Women entrepreneurs have an edge over male entrepreneurs, this is going to radically change the story of the country’s future and its approach to creating economic value. Women will outperform for several valid reasons. All women are born entrepreneurs. We manage our families, home budgets, deal with sabji walas and still save money,” said Raveena.
The actor is hoping to script a difference through her future roles. Said she, “My movie director Onir’s Shab is with newcomers Ashish Bist and Arpita. Another one is Ashtar Sayed’s Matr, which deals with violence against women. Shab is an emotional story, where I play a high-society woman who is in a relationship with a younger man, while Matr is a social drama. I found the script very gratifying, as it showed how one can deal with criminals indulging in crimes against women while remaining on the right side of the law. As a society, we need to change our laws to protect women.”
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