Showing resilience to rise again!

A father of three and retired state road transport corporation employee, Bashir Handoo rose like a phoenix from the ashes after his son’s mobile and computer shop was destroyed by the floods last year.
Showing resilience to rise again!
File Photo

A father of three and retired state road transport corporation employee, Bashir Handoo rose like a phoenix from the ashes after his son's mobile and computer shop was destroyed by the floods last year. 

Despite facing losses worth Rs 10 lakh, Handoo did not lose hope and rebuild the shop with the help of his friends and family. 

"We have managed to get new supplies of mobile covers and cell phones from my son's friends who lent us these products. The business has started picking up gradually but sales are nowhere close to days before floods," Handoo said. 

Flood waters had made Handoo realize that doing a business of electronic gadgets is a tight-rope walk. 

He is now hoping that any amount from the government compensation can help him shift his business from electronic goods to something more viable. 

"The earlier per day sales of Rs 1000 or so have dropped to Rs 200- Rs 300. I hope for a speedy compensation since I have declared losses worth Rs 10 lakh which as per government norms should not take much time," Handoo said. 

After his shop remained inundated for 27 days, Handoo and his children had cleared ten gunny bags full of damaged mobile phones and muck. 

While the damaged goods fetch Handoos Rs 2000, all what is left from the deluge is memories in form of some photographs of the shop during the cleaning process. 

The saving grace for Handoo however was that he was not under the burden of any loan since the seed capital for the shop was managed from money raised by selling a piece of land at Nowgam. 

"I had sold 14 marlas of land for Rs 14.5 lakh to start this business. My family condition forced me to restart the business almost three months after the floods," he said. 

A paltry pension fund and some financial assistance from his brothers helped Handoo to make a new beginning. 

Among priced possessions which Handoo lost during the deadly floods, was a high-definition video camera that he had borrowed from a friend. 

In addition two laptops and one computer was also damaged beyond repair, he added. 

Such was the scenario at Handoo's shop that bills and documents were washed away in the flood waters. 

What was left behind were damaged goods that were sold in junk. 

A serious ailment of a family member added to Handoo's burden as he had to spend Rs 12000 to buy one injection for the treatment. 

Restarting the shop has been a taxing task since Handoo family had moved to Anantnag after the floods to avoid any infectious disease caused to the ailing family member. 

"We didn't spend much on the shop as the only renovation work we did was some colouring and fixing of window panes. But still I cost Rs 50,000," Handoo said. 

In the course of the fight back, Handoo family has exhibited immense grit and determination. 

The slowdown of the business forced the younger son out of the three siblings to start ferrying goods in a load carrier while the older son is hoping for a rebound of the mobile and electronic business. 

Belonging to a modest background, Handoo is now an integral part of the bazaar committee of Bemina and attends all the meetings and demonstrations religiously. 

"Being united is the only hope for our survival as this would help the trader community to put pressure on the state government for getting the compensation money," Handoo adds.

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