Location: Khatalaput, India
Profession: Carpenter & Mother

Nestled in the small undulating hills of Nandagaon block is Khatalaput, a little community of 30 odd households. Khatalaput is home to Tula Khemundu, her husband and her five children – four daughters and a son. Her husband’s family – like most other families in the village – has lived here for more than three generations, but did not have a patta (record) to the land until recently. Basic needs such as food, children’s education and – most importantly – an identity were denied to them as they did not legally own land.

Tula’s husband worked as a carpenter doing odd jobs in surrounding villages. The family never had enough to eat and Tula could not add to the family income as she had to look after the children.

Through the help of a community resource person, Tula and her husband got a joint title to four decimals of land. “Earlier, we found it really hard getting two square meals a day. Though I, as an ASHA, knew the importance of nutrition, there was no way I could provide quality food to my children. After getting a piece of land, I have started growing vegetables in our backyard which provides us all vegetables – and thus all the nutrition- that our family needs.”

This story was provided by NRMC. And was originally published in “Land answers the poverty question – Comprehensive Programme on Land to the Landless” by Odisha Tribal Empowerment and Livelihoods Programme (OTELP) with the support of IFAD.