Pune: From Housewives to Entrepreneurs: Women’s Journey in Pimpri-Chinchwad’s Industrial Landscape

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Pimpri, 21st November 2023: In the late 1990s to early 2000s, Pimpri-Chinchwad, known as an industrial city, witnessed a scarcity of women in its workforce. However, a group of women from Yamuna Nagar and Rupeenagar areas defied the norm by joining forces to manufacture spare parts for two-wheelers and four-wheelers. In a male-dominated industrial sector, this initiative marked a rare but impactful stride toward gender diversity.

Supported by small entrepreneurs who provided essential machinery and training, these women embarked on a journey that has empowered them both financially and personally. Today, over fifty women from Yamuna Nagar and Rupeenagar proudly contribute to the city’s industrial production through their home-based industry.

Pimpri-Chinchwad, often referred to as “Udyog Nagri” or Business City, has historically been dominated by male employees in its industrial sector. Many families in the city originated from outside villages, drawn by employment opportunities in the growing industrial hub.

Despite the prevailing gender norms, some women in these families took the initiative to start home businesses. While the industrial sector remained largely male-dominated, a handful of women persevered for 15 to 20 years, becoming experts in manufacturing spare parts essential for various products in the city. Their work not only provides financial independence but also boosts their self-confidence.

With two-wheelers and four-wheelers requiring numerous small spare parts, companies often outsource the manufacturing of these components to small-scale industries. These women have carved a niche in producing these essential components. Entrepreneurs extend support by providing training, machinery, and raw materials, enabling even 10th-grade pass women to excel in this skilled work.

Kunda Dundale from Yamuna Nagar shared, “I am a housewife. I was looking for work with my friends to do something for myself after taking care of the house. After learning about the work of making spare parts for cars, I started doing this work. We all work together, so the confidence is growing.”

Matsyagandha Kale from Rupeenagar highlighted the flexibility of the work, stating, “There is no time limit in this work. There is an equation that equals the amount of work. So we work as much time as we get from housework. Ten other people work with me to make these spare parts. Due to this, the family is having financial contributions.”

Omkar Sohoni, a small entrepreneur, expressed his commitment to empowering women: “We have been doing business related to industrial products for many years. Ever since we started this business, we have been inclined to provide work to needy women. They are also given training for this from time to time. By standing on their own feet, the financial status of these women is improving.”