At Ichalkaranji he worked for 12 hour every day without a weekly holiday. He was always underpaid for all the 18 years of his work. In fact in order to meet his expense and to send some money at home during festivals he took advances/loan from his owner (The owners always give such loans immediately, this is a sort of bonded labor). Since the time he took small loans never ever he was able to repay the sum, because his loan interest use to grow 24hours a day and he use to work for 12 hours a day. During all these 18 years he hardly ate single good meals in order to save money for family and repay the loan. His loan amount went to 65,000Rs. He several time thought of suicide because of the loan and constant abuse from the mill owner.
All these 18 years his owner hardly allowed him to visit home. It was only during festival time, that too for few days. On an average Yashvant use to visit his family for 25-30 days a year. His wife always uses to be in great anxiety because of husbands loan and in his absence responsibility of children. She uses to work hard through out the year just to meet the food arrangement for her family. It was hard to educate children, because most of the time they were needed to assist mother in her agriculture & house activities.
Some times when Yashvant use to come home and stay for assisting his family in monsoon agriculture, little extra time, the mill owner us to send jeep with 4-5 hired goondas. They use to come and drag Yashvant abusing him and his family members and several time looking with bad intention to Yashvant’ s grown up daughters.
In 2006, When Venu Madhuri was implementing the second irrigation project scheme; Yashvant took 5000 Rs loan to pay his contribution to be part of the irrigation scheme. In his absence his wife and brother voluntarily worked for the project. The project went successful. His brother Ranga worked very hard on his and Yashvants field. They cultivated sugarcane. With the money saved from the harvest Yashvant in one shot repaid in cash 65,000 Rs to his owner, who was shocked (because of loosing bonded labor) and joined his family at Ramanwadi after 18 years of separation.
Photo- Sri Yashvant with his family
Now Yashvant is back home since 2009. His one daughter got married and now he stays happily with his family and is strong supporter of the village development activity.
Before the irrigation project Yashvant has 10 guntas (1/4th of acre) under irrigation, for which they use to spend a lot for diesel to run the pump set. Now he has 3 acre of land under perennial irrigation, for which he requires no electricity or fuel, as the irrigation project is designed on gravitational force. Now Yashvant cultivates sugar cane, ground nut, rice, vegetables and finger millet.
Yashvant is also benefitted by the Gobar gas project. His two daughters use to assist mother in agriculture and household activities. In house hold activities collecting firewood for cooking, agriculture use to be a major activity. The situation forced them to drop school. With irrigation project and Gobargas at home the situation has changed and now Komal (Daughter) is studying in her 9th Std. Umesh is in 10th standard.
Whole family is strong supporters of Venu Madhuri’s village development program.