Ramchand Bhil is a Hindu refugee who has been displaced from Pakistan. Eight months ago, he arrived in India with his family on a religious visa. He was forced to leave behind his home, land, and every other possession, but not his skills in making delicious food.
With help from the Sewa Nyaya Uththan Foundation, Ramchand found livelihood selling ‘Kabuli Pulao’ in Jodhpur. He now beams with pride as the owner of a thriving business.
Ramchand used to live in the Sanghar district of Sindh province. There, he worked as a cook to support himself and his family. However, due to the increasing religious violence in Pakistan, he decided to migrate to India like thousands of Hindus have done over the past few decades.
He began the process of getting passports and visas for all members of his family. After gathering money for four months, the documents were ready. The family first arrived at the Attari Wagah border in Amritsar, and after completing all the paperwork there, he went to Haridwar for a religious pilgrimage with his family. Then he came to Jodhpur in Rajasthan to settle and start his life anew in the refugee settlement in Gangana village.
Ramchand and his family had only 70,000 rupees (in Indian currency) when they came to Jodhpur. With this, they purchased a small piece of land in the Gangana settlement and built a hut.
Although they had come to India, considering it their homeland, Ramchand was now faced with the challenge of finding employment to support his family. He took on whatever work he could find and tried his best to fulfil his responsibilities. Often, he took up daily wage work to run the household. However, daily wage jobs weren’t always available. The children often faced significant hardships due to a lack of work for weeks.
In May, when the Sewa Nyaya Utthan Foundation team reached the displaced Hindu refugee settlement in Gangana, Ramchand shared his employment challenges with the organisation’s co-founder, Swati Goel Sharma.
Ramchand said he was the sole earner in his family and was struggling to find regular employment. Sharing his previous occupation, he mentioned that he worked as a cook in Pakistan and made delicious vegetarian biryani.
Impressed by Ramchand’s willingness to work, we decided to help him. We gifted him a food rickshaw to start his business. We also provided some material for building a house on his purchased land. Receiving the food rickshaw brought immense joy to Ramchand.
Now, he runs his food rickshaw daily, which has increased his income. The vegetarian Kabuli dish he prepares in Jodhpur has become quite popular among the locals.
See some pictures below: