An entrepreneur, activist, and a game changer, Suchismita Saha is one among a very few women in the world of real estate business. A young 26 year old businesswoman from Agartala, Saha is bringing about a positive transformation in the real estate landscape of North East. Saha has not only overcome hurdles to reach the peak but also has touched the lives of many people, especially young girls with her NGO.
By Anindita Acharya
American TV personality and businesswoman Martha Stewart had once said, “Build your business success around something that you love — something that is inherently and endlessly interesting to you.”
A regular 22-year-old college goer would spend her time Instagramming but Tripura-born Suchismita Saha ended up reading almost all business books she could get her hands on.
By the time she was in her fourth year of college, she knew she wanted to start her own business. She would excitedly share her business plans with anyone she met, and then rework on her ideas.
“I had many business plans and also had back-up plans ready in case one failed. I was not willing to give up on my business dream because I had finally found something that I was truly passionate about and that really motivated me to get up every day in the morning and work harder,” said Saha.
Today, 26-year-old Saha might not be the first woman to own a real estate firm in the country but she is surely one of the first few from North East.
Apart from real estate, she also started Eureka Home Solutions and runs Tarubala Girls Foundation (TGF), which addresses the educational needs of the girls.
However, the journey hasn’t been easy for the TEDx speaker. In the man’s world, she has to constantly face gender discrimination to reach the place she has achieved today.
Her decisions were questioned. It took a toll on her mental health but she held strong. Saha knew backing out was “never an option.”
“We come from a region or perhaps a country where women entrepreneurs are limited. We not only face gender discrimination in business but Indian women in business are very rare. When it comes to my line of work i.e. real estate and retail, I couldn’t find anyone. So, I did deal with a lot of unnecessary gender-biased questions like why do you want to do this? It’s not for girls? Will you go and stand in a site full of male labourers? I did feel bad initially because if you face gender biasness or discrimination on a daily basis, it does take a toll on your mental health and emotions as well. But I since I had struggled a lot during the initial stage, I knew backing out wasn’t an option. I was determined that no matter who says what, I am going to push harder and try harder,” says a determined Saha.
The young entrepreneur says workplace gender discrimination is an “unspoken truth” and will continue to exist.
“We just don’t speak about it. Very few men want to take orders from a 26 year old girl. I look at their faces and I know that they are not okay with a female boss but what I understand is that as their boss it’s my job to get the work done from them and not indulge in sentiments or age-old power play. Action speaks louder than words and good work speaks the loudest,” she smiles.
Saha finds solace at Tarubala Girls Foundation — something which is very close to her heart.
The foundation takes wholesome care of the girls especially of their education. Named after her grandmother, who has been her childhood inspiration, Tarubala Girls Foundation, says Saha believes in giving utmost to helping women achieve their highest potential. “
The NGO has reached out to underprivileged women and children throughout the state through education and training, we have been able to work with orphans as well as the underprivileged to lend a helping hand towards their empowerment,” says Saha.
Post pandemic, several schools have opened but many have dropped out too due to lack of money. Also, there is deep-rooted gender inequality in education too.
Saha says they often organize workshops and seminars with the girls and their families and make them understand.
“There’s a lack of interest and resources among male children. Early marriage is prevalent among female children. We try to address these issues on one-on-one basis. Communication, imparting knowledge about social issues, encouraging the girls to participate in seminars, career-oriented workshops are few of our adopted ways to keep them motivated and aware,” she says.
As 2021 comes to an end, Saha now has grand plans for her Real Estate Company and Tarubala Girls Foundation. In 2022, Saha wants to venture into new regions with her firm.
“At Eureka, we are trying to simplify things. We are expanding into the Kolkata market and hence adding some incredible people to our workforce. A new territory means new challenges but we are excited and thrilled about it. For Tarubala Girls Foundation, we wish to have more people onboard so that maximum people can be reached. We are currently helping 47 girls from various regions who are truly gifted and have overcome many difficulties just to study. We wish to find more such students and volunteers. I believe both empowerment and happiness create ripple effects. You may not be able to affect everyone at once. You have to take it one person at a time. If you can impart knowledge, empower and spread happiness among five people, those five will go and spread joy to more people. The permutation-combination is endless. It creates never ending ripples, which keeps spreading. You will never know how many lives you will touch just with little words of courage and the act of caring,” signs off Saha.
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Anindita has been a journalist for more than 12 years, having worked with The Telegraph, Hindustan Times, The Times of India and Eastern Chronicle. A tea addict, when not watching films or web series, she is planning her next trip. Most of the time, she is bringing on friends.