On account of International Women’s day, team Urban Tree has meticulously chosen some great women achievers of our country. As we celebrate the social, economic, cultural and political achievement of women on March 8, this is a series of blogs that feature those strong women of India who have made their way up to become successful by breaking stereotypes!
Chhavi Rajawat is an MBA graduate who quit her high paying corporate job and went to become a Sarpanch of her ancestral village in Rajasthan.
You would think that after getting an MBA and working in places like Times of India, Carlson Group of Hotels and Airtel that Chhavi Rajawat would continue to rise in the business world but instead she chose to rise in philanthropic circles.With the goal being to make a real difference, she headed back to her village of Soda in Rajasthan’s Tonk district and became the first woman in India’s Sarpanch to hold an MBA degree.
Soda is actually a remote village in the corner of Rajasthan. The village is one where the houses are made only of mud, the electricity as well as basic supplies are always few and far between. The fear of drought always looms over the people’s head and the literacy levels are below 50 percent.
Chhavi always wanted to give back her village so she took steps to provide drinking water to her village as well as help in the construction of more than forty roads. The graduate from Lady Sri Ram college has gone on to construct 800 toilets in a village of nearly 900 houses. She even got a soft drink company to invest and clean a pond which is the village’s only source of drinking water.Quite naturally, the education as well as exposure that Chhavi had gained certainly did catch the attention of the village residents who quickly voted in her favor at the age of 30.Though she does hold the position of being an elected representative, Ms. Rajawat is not actually affiliated to any political party. Thanks to her years of experience working under big corporations and companies, the wealth of experience and support that Chhavi Rajawat brought to the table has led to the radical transformation of her village. This makes it one of the most popular and finest villages in all of India.
Of course change is not always met with open arms. During one of the projects that aimed to construct an IT center on the common land using the central funds of the village, Chhavi was attacked by anti-social elements that were angered if not against her mission to fully transform the desert village in Rajasthan.
When asked by NDTV about her motivation or personal reason for striving to develop the village Chhavi answered “If India continues to make progress at the same pace as it has for the past 65 years since independence, it just won’t be good enough. We’ll be failing people who dream about water, electricity, toilets, schools and jobs. I am completely convinced that we can do it faster and differently.