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Saturday, 20 February 2016

Physically challenged village entrepreneur promotes digital literacy in Chhattisgarh

Despite being physically challenged by birth, 24 year old Avila Lakra demonstrated excemplary will power to become a village level entrepreneur - standing out as a role model for deprived women in the society as she carries out the task of imparting digital literacy in her native village Jhingo of Balrampur district of Chhattisgarh.
For the last two years, this young girl is running Common Service Center through which she is providing online services for the village residents like of banking, online electricity bill payment, online labour registration updating Aadhar card services on mobiles and so on. For providing digital services in her village, Avila has now been selected for All India Women Village Level Entrepreneur (VLE) Award to be given in New Delhi by Union Minister of Communication and Technology Ravi Shankar Prasad on Feburary 20

Born to a very poor family, her father and mother are daily laborers and it became extremely difficult for them manage a family of seven members with their scanty income. As Avila was handicapped from her childhood she was treated like a liability in the family where only survival matters most.

Despite her disability in both legs, Avila Lakra never lost her confidence and determination. And while narrating her journey of becoming VLE Avila said, "In childhood I had to battle deep rooted poverty as well as disability but against all odds I completed schooling from a village mission school and passed Diploma in Computer Application. Once considered as liability for my parents, now I am able to support her family financially and instrumental in educating young siblings from the income I made through CSC services".

Way back when Avila was exploring her career options for livelihood she learnt the recruitment of VLE for CSC services through Sarpanch. Later she faced the selection process and distinctly selected as a VLE.

Initially for CSC work, she could not afford a laptop then she took help from Sarpanch and borrowed his laptop and latter on when she earned her commission she first bought a laptop for herself.

Later, she got training on Kiosk banking through CSC officials and able to open 1800 aadhar enabled bank accounts of all house hold in her Gram Panchayat. Now she makes Aadhaar Enabled Payment System transactions and make payments to citizens of different government schemes in her CSC . She is able to earn more than Rs 25,000 through CSC services and supports her family. Now her parents are happy and helps her daily to reach CSC office.

The CSC has enabled her to become self confident and financially independent. She is now known in Jhingo village as well as nearby villages of Balrampur district . CSC has given her reputation in the society and enabled her to serve people and earn a livelihood.

Source : TOI , 17th Feb 2016 

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