Selling keerai helped me sail through the lockdown without taking loans, says this hawker

“Selling keerai helped me sail through the lockdown, without taking loans,” says Ezhilarasi, a keerai hawker, sitting beside her cart at South Mada Street, Mylapore opposite Surya Sweets store here.

The 30 something old sells a range of keerai varieties including mudakathan, murungai, keelanelli, and thuthuvalai.

Says Ezhilarasi, “Several vegetable vendors and businessmen I know have been taking loans to continue their business during lockdown.”

“But luckily, as I sell only keerai, I have managed to run my family, through the lockdown, without taking any loans.”

This is because “Keerai is something people buy at all times. So I get an average of Rs 200 or Rs 300 a day, which is sufficient to buy daily bread for my family.” And this she says was the case even during lockdown.

The resident of Mandaveli has two children, one boy in class 10 and a girl in class 7. By saving small amounts of money from her daily earnings, she says she has also paid the school fees for them.

“Both my children study in government schools. So we had to pay school fees, which was Rs 8000 for each. I kept saving Rs 50 from keerai business and that helped pay the fees,” she says proudly.

Ezhilarasi’s husband works as a gardener. “He too contributes towards the family, whenever he gets work.”

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