Divya Rawat of Chamoli (Garhwal) district of Uttarakhand state today is breaking all those illusions related to women farmers, who have been woven by the society for centuries while battling this patriarchy. Divya has given a new definition to being a female farmer, where she has proved that a woman can establish herself as a farmer and earn a special place in society as well. Divya has become a well-known name in the field of mushroom cultivation today and is also referred to as ‘Mushroom Girl’. Today, Divya is doing more than 2 crore rupees through mushrooms.
Divya has been awarded many big awards till now, she was also awarded the Nari Shakti Award by the President a few years ago. Divya’s story is very interesting and inspiring how she left her good job in Delhi NCR and moved back to her hometown and through her work and dedication, managed to stop the migration of farmers in the area.
That’s how it started
Hailing from Dehradun, Uttarakhand, Divya’s father is a retired army officer. Divya got her early education from Noida, after which she started her career working in a private company in the NCR region, during which Divya left about 8 jobs one after the other. The dissatisfaction found in her jobs and the desire to do something different brought Divya back to her home state of Uttarakhand. The village of Divya is situated at a distance of 25 km from Kot Kandara Chamoli district.
In the year 2013, when Divya returned to Uttarakhand, she found that people were forced to migrate due to lack of employment and then Divya resolved to do something different in this direction. In the year 2015, Divya trained herself in mushroom production. Divya started a mushroom business with an investment of just Rs 3 lakh and gradually many people from the area started joining her. Divya herself, while cultivating mushrooms, also inspired others in the area to cultivate mushrooms.
Brand Ambassador of Mushroom
For this commendable effort of Divya, the state government declared her as the brand ambassador of mushrooms. Divya has so far established more than 50 units in several districts of Uttarakhand, along with her team she goes from village to village encouraging people to cultivate mushrooms and also trains them.
Divya runs ‘Soumya Food Private Company’, whose annual turnover today is in crores of rupees. He also has a mushroom plant at Mothrovala, where mushrooms are produced throughout the year. The plant produces buttons in the winter season, oysters in the midseason and milky mushrooms in the summer season.
Divya also produces Cardicef Militaries, a species of worm species found in the Himalayan region, which can cost up to Rs 2 to 3 lakh per kg in the market. Divya has established several labs for commercial production of wormwood. Divya had trained in Thailand to produce wormwood and it is in great demand in the international market, whereas in India its production is negligible at the commercial level.