Friday, July 5, 2013

Eco Kargha Handicrafts

The journey with Eco Kargha has started well. We have done more sales that what we used to do in BDT in last 2 years. The pragmatic approach to look at development has been working. People do not need mere assurances or awareness of issues. They need work. For providing work, you need capital. To get capital, you need to have a profitable enterprise. Only profit earning enterprise can rise up to billions of dollars of revenue . Only profit earning enterprise can employ millions of people across globe. We are on that path. We have been working on model to create employment for weavers. The model is almost final. It needs to be fine tuned.Basically the model consists of 1 Master weaver who has a warping machine unit on his own and can manage 2 more warping unit on need basis. One warping unit can warp 7-8 designs of saree or stoles on per month basis. He manages 10-12 weavers who have their own handloom. The model created employment of 15-20 families for whole year in a village. The master weaver is responsible for all quality, repair and theft of yarn if any. We provide master weaver with plain yarn as well as dyed yarn. We provide master weaver with the designs and wages. We provide master weaver credit/advance to manage production on need basis. We will provide master weavers the formats in register to record their transactions with weavers and allied services people. We have 2 production unit firmed up and 3 more are in discussion mode. Each production unit will produce 125 saree or 500 stoles per month. So, the back end production model is working and is replicated across 5-6 villages/clusters in Bhagalpur. We hope to create 1000s of employment in this year and hope to create more in various states of India. Now, these is no limit of vision. You earn profit and do whatever you want to do. Things are rising from ashes. Its a second life for me as an entrepreneur. More later .................. Ravi Chandra

Sunday, January 27, 2013

Just Keep Walking

Hi All, Getting myself to write blog after a long time. It takes lot of courage to write truths and admit failures. So, starting to admit the mistakes of entrepreneurship over last five years and still have courage to start the second inning of entrepreneurship. We could not realise our dream with Bihar Development Trust. The dream is still in my eyes. BDT survives but in a dire situation. There is lot of achievements but with lot of mistakes or learning experiences. Basically, We failed in our first attempt due to our naiveness, certain romantic stubbornness to overlook reality and trying to transform a dead state through our own individual efforts. It has given way to reality and pragmatism. Well, the second inning start with Eco Kargha Handicrafts Marketing Pvt Ltd. The sharing will continue under this blog . I hope to blog more frequently to vent up my frustrations and experiences. So keep reading. Ravi

Wednesday, September 28, 2011


Just came back from Bhagalpur. The roads have become worse due to rains. It takes 9 hours to reach bhagalpue from Patna that too while travelling by safari. Life is getting more hectic due to increase in reponsibilities to wife and my new born baby girl. The time remains the same but you need to divide the time between entrepreneurial work and family and both are equally important. You can not choose. You have to have a balance between them. Thats the toughest part. I keep hearing about balancing the life but those who have to do it feel the pain. Its tough. You can not keep on going on tour just like that. You have to take concern of family before planning tours.

These changes are coming with the changes in external environments. Things are getting tougher and tougher and its a really sternuous task of scaling up. Its like that as you climg higher, every feet of climb becomes more tough.

Anyway, there is only one option that is to go up. Because the another option is death that is not really an option. So, lets keep walking step by step and belief in destiny. As ALCHEMIST novel says, when you keep moving towards your goal, the whole world conspires with you to help in achieving your goals.

Friday, February 18, 2011

My own Evaluation

I started my entrepreneurial journey three year ago. This was the first blog I created. Although now formal blog of Bihar Development Trust has moved to

I am using this blog to vent out my personal frustrations. Over last three years , we have grown. We have survived. In eyes of many people we are success story. We have given loans to 5300 women . We have disbursed more than Rs.520 lakh in last three years. We have recoevered more than 4 crores over last three years. Our women members are repaying well. Our staff team is very good. We have almost zero attrition. Even those staff who went due to personal ego stuff, have come back. We have build a great team of 50 people. We have sold silk product worth 5-60 lakh in two years from bahgalpur. We have provided employemnt to around 30-50 weavers in somewhat regular manner. We have registered an organisation of weavers in Lodipur named LODIPUR BUNKAR TRUST. We hope to build this organisation as weavers owned organisation managed by professional like AMUL. We are forming farmer clubs in Aurangabad. We have an outreach of 1000 farmers. We are trying to create a farmer federation structure and do a AMUL in grain commodities. We have created a bamboo processing unit in Kahalgaon. Around 200 women SHG members are getting employed on regular basis and more than 1000 women will get employed in this project. We have created four organisations till date. Our group revenues are more than Rs.100 lakh. We are somewhat profitable but not in a very big manner. We have a balance sheet size of 2.5 crore. But , is this enough?

To grow more, we need more and more funds. These funds are slow to come by. We have to give employment to 10 lakh people of Bihar. For this our size should be atleast 25000 crore. We have to create more labour intensive industries which can give jobs to unskilled men and women after small traning. We need to more marketing to support more bamboo processing unit. We need more marketing in silk to support more handloom weavers. We need more marketing in grains and their processing so that it can support more farmer profitably.

Of my 20 billion dollar dream, I had built my three criteria on which I would like to be evaluated after 2020.

Did I achieve my goal of creating a 20 billion dollar organisation headquartered in Bihar?
Did I created 100 organisation in Bihar?
Did I create 10 lakh jobs in Bihar?

Where I am in 2011.............

The total balance sheet size of all organsiation will be 0.5 million dollar. The market value may be debatable as it is not listed.
A total of 4 organisation has been registered and running till date.
A total of 50 direct jobs and 1000 indirect jobs has been created.

So,I have achieved 0.025% of first goal, 4% of second goal and 0.1% of third goal in last three years.

Am I going all right, I do not know. I do not know when did I visualised these three goals as my guiding force. I did not how did I created those metrics in 2007-2008. But they have stayed with me and I am hell bent on achieving these goals.

Its destiny,fate or its written. I will keep working towards it till I die.

18 TILL I DIE..............

JAI BIHAR............

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Enterpreneurism - My experience

It is about one year since I started the path of being enterpreneur. The path I chosen knowingly. I knew it would be tough. It was a ''andar ke feeling also ki bihar ke liye kuch karna hain. bahoot ho gaya logon kee sunte sunte ki tum bihari log to bahoot tez hote ho. to bihar me tum logon ko kaam karna chahiye. Lekin kaise karren. Bihar me hamare layak koi jobs hi nahi hain. Obviously I cant work for free or peanuts.'' Second reason was that we saw Bihar as an oppurtunity. It is a virgin market for all kind of services. People are fed up with lack of service delivery even by private sector let alone the government sector.
So, fired with zeal and enthusiasm , I quit my job at TATA AIG LIFE as Executive at Lucknow incharge of Rural Channel of East and Central UP. Corporate job is cushy , comfortable but senseless. I mean you are withdrawn in a rat race of promotion, perks, incentives and nothing beyond. A lollypop keeps hanging over your head and you jump like kids to lick that elusive lollypop. Just like ''zalebi race with your hands tied back''.

To secure me financially, I took up a consultancy in Uttarakhand NGO called AAROHI. I was trying to find job in Bihar but no one was willing to give me part time as I have opened my own NGO and suspected that I may develop contacts while working and get funding for my organisation. So, I managed somehow with the small consultancy fee that I was getting from Aarohi.
I needed to travel extensively to meet funder and donor agency. Last year 50% of my time was spent in train. We started with our own money and putting the use of home assets. Rasing fund for Bihar was tough. Every one is cynical. To my dismay that by virtue of registering my NGO, I joined the category of crooks. My family reputation went into tatters. Each arguement with my dad, mom, brother, sister ends in all requesting for me to take job and then heated arguement. My dad said very matter of fact that every one likes bhagat singh but when he is born in some other family. I said that I am not going to die. We will not fight criminals. We will not go against any power center. We want to do our own work. We are into microfinance . The microfinance operation is about 5 month old. Loan is being disbursed . Repayment are comning regulalry except 2-3 cases. We are gaining confidence. But the execution and fund raising stress is getting higher and higher. Whole one year of fighting against the tension is taking toll on my health. I am too alone. I cant talk to any one about my doubts. No one is there to soothe me or calm me. I ave friends who understand my situation. That is sole solace for me. Many people call me a Hero. role model. But the uncertainty are too much. Although the path that i have chosen is tough and I can sustain myself with small consultancy here and there. the financial security is pressing. I am travlling a path alone. I need support and help. Some one who can guide me about my work, Some one who can calm my frayed nerves. Its getting too much for me. Doing consultancy, Making business plans, accounting for money, mailing or spamming, updates, travelling, making people believe that we are genuinely wanting to do development of bihar. I want to see bihar as economic super power with good road, power etc. I know that I will achieve this dream. I need co warriors who can fight the war with me. Finding people who understand basic arithmatic is tough in Bihar. I find there is hidden employment with every youth preparing for competition exams from clerk to IAS and not considering himself unemployed. If asked , he will say'' hum abhi tayari kar rahe hai''. Bihar youth keep preparing for competition exams till 32 years of age. Only 10-20% get selected any where. Reamaining 80% bceome good for nothing who keep whining that I missed this exam or that exam or interview just for 1 marks. These 80% have made themsleved unfit for work. Then they do not like to do field work. They want to do the work of manager. This is a strange phenomenon in Bihar. Bihar needs fresh legs to work that only it will grow. Bihar can not be developed by people who have lost the fight of life and now only are vegetable and become suckers. We need to train this army of 32-35 year but do they feel the need of it. Can they work 24 hours a day.I dont know.

At this moment, I am feeling too tensed, mentally fatigued, worried , frustated with no one to share my mental agony for making my organisation grows. I know the morning is near and will reach there.

Please help...................................

Friday, November 30, 2007


Dear Friends,
Greetings from Bihar Development Trust!
We have completed nine months of existence as organisation. It has received tremendous support from all of you since our inception as BIHAR DEVELOPMENT TRUST on March 26, 2007.
It has been a very interesting journey full of challenges like walking on glass edge. Our agenda is to build a most transparent organisation in the world where nothing is hidden. In doing this, I need constant criticisms, suggestions for improving our transparency level. Governance is very important aspect of it. We would like few of you who can and have inclination to take active role in BDT act as a catalyst of growth of BDT. It will mean visiting our operations, suggestions for improvement, raising finances and spreading the words of our work to the outer world to more people in your network in individual capacity. We want to build a world class institution which people should look up to. I am dreaming big but only after dreaming, you can wake up and execute your dreams. As Sony Akio Morita said ‘flawless execution is the key”. In our quest to build a world best organisation which improves the quality of life (health, education, financial condition) of millions of people who dream of living life with dignity and respect, we need support from all of you. We need support as idea level and execution level. We are on right track and need to go on till we achieve our goal.
I have put the goal on our website wwwwwwwwwwwwwwwww
We do have abstract goal of achieving dignity and respect. But to put on paper, I have dreamt of building a US$20 billion (may be euro as $ is going down) enterprise in Bihar by 2020. The areas of opportunities are very common ideas like microfinance, handloom and handicrafts, fruits and vegetable, Agricultural commodities, health care and education, power and rural BPO and tourism etc as we have no innovative ideas. We believe in executing those things in Bihar which many big companies finds unable to do it.
Management people who have read the JIM COLLINS ‘BUILT TO LAST’’ may classify as BHAG ie big hairy audacious goal. Yes, we are dreaming big. The 20 billion dollar wealth will be created in partnership of 5 million people being associated with us. We hope to add 5 million people with us by year 2020 as producers/users of our service at Bihar. For that we may have to float different forms or organizations like producer companies, cooperatives, trust, societies, private ltd companies, NBFC, Banks or many more economic and legal entities which are best suitable to take the advantage of globalization as well as localization and most cost efficient.
The idea is to adapt GRAMEEN and AMUL model to Bihar context supported by most efficient technologies.
So to reach the 20 billion dollar/euro goal by 2020 in Bihar, I need support of all of you. For some of you, it may seem figment of imagination by a young people and young organisation which have not yet crossed one year of survival. To be frank, we don’t know how we achieve this ‘LAKSHYA’ or goal but we will achieve it. There are many skeptical of achieving this goal, given the crime ridden scenario that the people not living in Bihar feel more. Crime has been there and will always be there as it is in Mumbai, Delhi or NewYork. But, it has not stopped the people making billions in those cities. So I feel few of the next new generation billionaire will come from Bihar along with other states.
Many people feel that talking so audaciously and big, we may invite the fate of Sanjay Ghosh or Manjunath or Sateyendra Dubey . How to avoid that fate is a challenge that we may face when we grow big. This question has no answers but we feel that we are not fighting against anyone. The solution may be creating a win-win scenario in which every stakeholder’s benefits. We will work it out when the situation will arrive.
What is our self interest in doing this? Obviously we will also be making our billions. Only different thing is that it will benefit more than 5 million people or may be more and they will have more money in their pockets if we surpass our dreams.
Over last one year during my extensive travels, many people have wished me luck as well as not advised to get trapped in Bihar.
But the feeling or adrenalin rush that you feel while talking to the community, explaining our loan products or training our staff members or explaining people why you should join us beats everything that may give pleasure or anything else that money can buy. And master card is for those things. These are one of the things that MasterCard will not buy. I need people with MasterCard to support us and join us in the field to derive that pleasure. One more business opportunities that may be development tourism that is give a chance to MasterCard holder to work like a social worker or activist for a day in exchange of dollars/Euros.

So, why the mails was written to all of you? We have a work to do that is very important for the India and the whole world. I send 3000 mails per week and It will go on increasing as I met new people and gather new mail ids.
The mail has been written to all of you to help me in making Bihar Development Trust as a world class organisation. For which I need people who shares the similar ownership feelings towards Bihar Development Trust and believe in the dreams as articulated by it. I would like their help in improving governance, transparency and accountability to all stakeholders. The good practice of running an organisation so that it outlasts the longest running organisation of this millennium needs to be instituted right now. We are raw and we have still not learned the art of hiding as we have nothing to hide right now. But we feel that we need to be alert and vigilant right now so that we are not quagmire by the corruption that prevails in every big organisation. We want to account for every amount we get and pay and make billions in a transparent manner. So that you all can say that we achieved 20 billion dollar dream and you know how we achieved it.
Can anyone among the thousands who have read till this end will come forward to achieve that?


Ravi Chandra

Wednesday, October 24, 2007


hi friends,

you all must be reading the mails about our work. may be bored of it .

this mail is not about asking money and helping us financially. its not that i do not need that but its better when we are one to one on net/phone etc.

we are moving on with our dreams to make bihar a developed state. to be frank, initially there was no clue at all what we are going to do with BDT. both of us were clueless. we keep doing what we were getting. so we did the voter awareness programme. very crucial for us. it was our first event and we were shit scared. but it turned out be successful in local context and gave us confidence. then we moved ahead with our vermicompost study for pradan.

the first three months were very crucial as we were uncertain. then it was only prm 25 who supported us financially. you know who gave us money to survive. we were really scared when things stopped after vermicompost study. we were not getting any assignments and were not able to move forward.

we were frozen with fear. it was support of you prm 25 in that crucial time that kept us going. mantri,sandy and pankaj really played a huge role in just keeping me propped up.

they were present physically with me and most of you were on phone with me. thanks a lot for that.

we have done some good work in flood relief due to private bihari efforts. you all must be amazed to know that there are lots of BIHARI e groups who are active a lot and there is support available.

only issue is of trust. slowly slowly i am moving towards gaining the support of key biharis in those e groups . most very professional with all lineage you can think of . they will loosen the purse strings when they gain total confidence on us.

ya issue of fraud and cheater tag do haunted us and hurt us. most of people were too skeptical. there was a case of too gud to be true. here are two people well settled and well educated jumping into murky world of bihar development sector. everything is not good in the world. but world is composed of people like us. its we who make it worse for living and its we who will make it a better place of living. so initial insults and opposition were pouring and again it was prm 25 who was standing with us like pillars.

it was a journey of selfdiscovery for us. our conviction itself was shaky in the beginning and as we are moving on, it has grown a lot and we are becoming convinced that bihar is a oppurtunity waiting to be unfolded. the hidden half lotus of IRMA will unfold before your eyes. just keep supporting and watching us. so we are moving ahead. each day our conviction gets increase by gettings mails from unknown people who wants to contribute and support us.unknown people whom i have never met have helped us then more than few of friends whom i knew. there is a guy named varun who shared his first salary after joining as MT in tata chemicals. his innocent trust touched my heart.

then, there is prm 5 irman, prof raghunath(IITK,IRMA) who listened patiently to me when i visited tapmi. i was amazed and too happy when he told me that he has saved all crap mails that i wrote and was very happy. he said that your BDT is being discussed with great hope among senior IRMANs and we are watching you. Go ahead but be careful. He gave 15000 not as loan but future equity which shows his trust that definitely we will reach the phase when we will incorporate the microfinance operation as NBFC.

Me and dev ji has experienced a personal catharsis and self development over last seven months which has strenghtened the belief in humanity. Lot of good things has been happening and will be happening in near future.

There are talks of incorporating a non profit in USA for fund raising for BDT. so we may be in USA (not physically) by the year 2008.

one more thing, do keep keeping a close watch and criticising us where you know we are making mistakes.

we want to be a total professional transparent organisation which brought the bihar on top with support of not only biharis but fellow indians and yes PRM 25 is going to play a big role in it.

Thnks a lot

luv u all

Ravi Chandra

Dev Kumar Dubey