The whole world came to a standstill due to the Corona epidemic and then the lockdown. We are all witnesses of the times when everyone was struggling with one or the other problem. Business, job, everything had come to a standstill. But even in that period some people were moving forward with creativity. Today we are going to tell you the story of one such young man from Odisha, who is physically handicapped, but we are most capable in mind and skill. During the lockdown, he sculpted his skills and today he is making more than one craft out of coconut shell and selling it.
This inspiring story is of 29 year old Sabyasachi Patel of Puintala village in Balangir district of Odisha. Sabyasachi has a spinal problem since childhood, due to which he cannot stand for long and cannot walk properly. But today Sabyasachi is earning by making 15 types of decorative items including cups, glasses, chariots from coconut shell.
Sabyasachi told The Better, “I have been fond of art and craft since childhood. This year in lockdown, I learned to make decorative items from coconut shells through YouTube. By the way, at that time I was learning all this for hobby. But today that hobby has become my business.”
Sabyasachi said that when he started uploading the pictures of his made objects on Facebook, there was a great response. He started getting some orders and then from here the path of his employment was opened.
Sabyasachi is rich in skill
Sabyasachi’s father is a farmer and cultivates one acre of his own land. His mother is a housewife and also has a younger brother. He did a Diploma in Food Production from Kolkata SIHM (State Institute of Hotel Management) in the year 2010, after passing 12th in Science. Along with the course, he did six months of training at the hotel.
Says Sabyasachi, “One of my cousins is working in Maldives after studying hotel management. It was he who advised me to complete this course. In fact, after diploma at that time, government jobs were available in the IRCTC Food Catering Department in the Railways. I was fond of crafts, so I took separate training in food carving during the course. In which I was taught to make beautiful carvings on fruits and vegetables. To be honest, I had full hope that I would definitely get a government job in Divyang quota.
But it is said that sometimes what you think does not happen. Same happened with Sabyasachi. Due to some technical reasons, he did not get the job. Recalling those days, he says, “To be honest, I did the course only because I wanted a job. Due to being disabled, I cannot stand for long, so getting a job in a hotel was not my thing. During the course, I had completed six months of training with great difficulty. But it was my misfortune that I didn’t get the job.”
came back home and started a new job
Sabyasachi decided to come back home instead of working in a hotel at the behest of his father. He came home and started his graduation. After graduation, he opened a grocery shop. But Sabyasachi, an avid fan of Croft, always stuck to his hobby. He also used to do the work of thermocol, ice and carving of fruits and vegetables in marriage or any other function when he got time.
Everyone in his village is aware of his skills, so he used to get orders all the time. But during the lockdown last year, when celebrations were banned to avoid infection, they also stopped getting work. Even at that time Sabyasachi did not get disappointed and started preparing to learn something new.
New art learned in spare time
Sabyasachi says that during the lockdown, one of his nieces asked him to make Ganesha from coconut for her school project. For this, he started searching for videos on YouTube, in which he was taught to make Ganesha from coconut. In this way they came to know about the craft made from coconut and its shell.
There is a Shiva temple near Sabyasachi’s house. Initially, he brought coconut from the temple and then started making stuff out of it. They first made cups for drinking tea, then gradually started making other things too.
He says, “Even after the temple was closed due to the lockdown last year, people used to keep coconuts outside the temple during the month of Sawan. I contacted the priest of Balangir Loknath temple and started bringing coconut shell from there and started making decorative items from it.”
In August this year, he started uploading photos of his created objects to Facebook. Made on the lines of best from West, their products were liked by many people online. About five days later, he was ordered by a girl from Cuttack to make wine glasses and cups. In return, he got Rs 300.
Skill has become a new business
However, when he was making these products, he did not have any business idea in his mind. But he got 10 orders through Facebook in just two months. Some orders were local while two or three orders were received from Cuttack which they sent through courier. Sabyasachi says that no one else used to make such products in his district, so many local news channels started talking about him.
About this Sabyasachi says, “When my art and craft started being talked about on local news channels, Sudhir Bhoi, an Amazon consultant from Odisha, contacted me and inspired me to become a seller on Amazon.”
When The Better India spoke to Sudhir about it, he said, “We work to get as many sellers registered on Amazon as possible. Sabyasachi was selling his products at very low prices. Due to which they were not getting much benefit. Whereas if he sells such items online then a cup or glass made by him can cost Rs 500, whereas he was selling his product for only Rs 100 or 150. That’s why we first got them registered as ‘Sabyasachi Craft’. At present, we are waiting for their GST numbers which will be done in the coming few days. After which soon people will be able to buy their products on Amazon.
Says Sabyasachi, “Once work starts on Amazon, I will start selling jute products as well. I sincerely hope that in the coming days, I will make good profits from it.”
Even though he is currently selling his art-crafts through Facebook, but still he is getting orders. People are liking his art. Sabyasachi hopes that in the coming times, when his products come on Amazon, his employment will increase and his earnings will also increase.
Sabyasachi’s story proves that no skill is ever wasted.
If you want to see the decorative items made by Sabyasachi, then you can contact him on social media (https://www.facebook.com/sabyasachi.patel).
Editing – G N Jha
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