Firecrackers, a source of livelihood for women in West Bengal’s Nungi village

      Diwali, the festival of lights, is celebrated by everyone across the country, but it also a source of income to several women in West Bengal’s Nungi village, who manufacture firecrackers. Firecrackers, which are much in demand during the festival season, provides an opportunity to numerous self-employed women in the village to earn their daily bread. The old and young in the village equally participate in the production of different varieties of firecrackers, which are then transported to many cities in the country. Niloofa Khatun, a local, emphasized that her family largely depends upon the income earned by manufacturing firecrackers. “Our firecrackers are in great demand in Kolkata, Bihar, Jharkhand, Jamshedpur and many other places. Here we make different kinds of firecrackers like flowerpots, Charki and coloured torches. We have been doing this since childhood and earn our livelihood through this,” Niloofa Khatun said. Barnali Das, another worker involved in the production of firecrackers, said that the firecracker production work is more like an industry in the village. “We make firecrackers to maintain our families. Every one from our family produces firecrackers. Not only the women, but also everyone make the firecrackers. We maintain our livelihood by selling the firecrackers. This is the village of firecrackers, we depend on these,” Barnali Das said. The firecrackers manufactured by these women have a huge demand. Apart from West Bengal, these are also sold to dealers in other parts of country, including Bihar, Jharkhand and Orissa.

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