Chhaya Devkota has always had a focus on helping others in her community, working as a field mobilizer for the NGO Forum for Awareness and Youth Activity (FAYA) Nepal and being active in small farming cooperatives like Sana Kisan Shakari Sanstha Ltd.

As solar CEO of Sambriddhi Saurya Urjah and Trades, part of Empower Generation’s distribution network, Chhaya is able to provide job opportunities to people in her community who have limited prospects. Bhim Bahadur Raji is a sales agent for Sambriddhi Saurya Urjah. He belongs to the Raji caste, a disappearing indigenous group in Nepal, with no access to education or skills training. Many Raji depend on ancient traditional practices to sustain their livelihoods.

Through Chhaya’s mentorship, Bhim was introduced to the concept of small farming cooperatives, which motivated him to start his own called Raji Cooperative in Kailali. He is president of Raji Cooperative and continues to work as Chhaya’s sales agent. Chhaya’s dedication to help people in her community, particularly those from marginalized communities, like Bhim, motivated her to run for Deputy Mayor of the Bhajani Municipality in Kailali District.

Chhaya after her election win as deputy mayor along with the mayor of Bhajani Municipality

Representing the Maoist Party, Chhaya won her election last month, running against several candidates from the Congress, Unified Marxist Leninist, and Forum parties. Her campaign focused on building the economic prosperity of Bhajani Municipality. Voters took Chhaya’s campaign platform seriously, as she is well respected. Her business practices reflect her dedication to her community by providing employment opportunities to marginalized people, housewives, and out-of-school girls to work as sales agents in both Kailali and Bardiya districts.

As a leader dedicated to community service, Chhaya had strong support to run for Deputy Mayor from sales agents, farmers from community cooperatives, and Empower Generation’s Field Mobilizer Rajendra Karki. As Deputy Mayor, Chhaya is now focused on creating more job opportunities in her community and ensuring accountability and transparency in the operations and financing of the municipality.

Chhaya, congratulations on your election win! We wish you all the best in your new leadership role!

Chhaya launched her business Sambriddhi Saurya Urjah and Trades with the financial support of our partner Kopernik.