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Rail Aahar


 

Life Unlimited Scholarship Proposal 2010 

Project – Rail Ahaar 

Shipra Agarwal, Disha Agarwal

 

 

What do we want to do? 

We want to work toward improving the lives and livelihood of the vendors who sell food items 

in the local trains in Mumbai. Our motive is to educate and empower these vendors and at the 

same time ensure that good quality products are available to the daily commuters in the 

Mumbai locals. We will use the scholarship amount to initially supply a limited number of 

vendors with good quality food products and educate them about what to sell, how to sell and 

what times to sell so that the system becomes beneficial to both the vendors and the 

commuters. 

 

Why do we want to do it? 

When I was once returning back from CST to Kanjurmarg, my attention was caught by the 

vendors who board the compartments to sell various products and the behavior and attitude of 

the commuters towards them. The next 45 minutes of the journey were devoted to the 

continuous observation of these vendors and the journey left me with some very harsh 

realizations.  The Mumbai locals are a means of communication for a large section of the 

people from the upper middle class to the lower income segments. The products however 

these vendors sell are looked upon with skepticism by many of them. A lot of people though 

inquired about the prices of the food stuffs but did not buy it because of the bad quality. This 

left me thinking that can there be a way to educate the food vendors about quality issues and 

make them sell better products, so that it benefits the commuters as well.  

 

How do we plan to do it? 

We will use the scholarship amount to buy and supply a small group of vendors with good 

quality products, an apron and a tray to carry the products. We will also allow them to keep a 

larger share of the profit. This we believe will help in establishing a faith and trust in vendors for 

us and our idea. They would believe that we are there to help them. In return for allowing them 

to keep a higher margin, we will ask them to come one day a week, where we will provide them 

with basic education. We will also educate them about cleanliness issues, and educate them 

about the importance of being vigilant to avoid any kind of security mishaps in the local trains. 

Once we have established the relationship with a few vendors, we will proceed further to rope 

in more vendors. We will take a very small margin from the vendors to support more vendors 

with time and will aim towards creating a self sustainable system. 

 

How will we tell others about our project? 

We will promote our project through conducting a survey in the trains after we start with a 

small group of vendors. The survey will be to gauge people’s reaction towards such an initiative 

and what more do they expect out of it. This will help us in telling people about our project and 

also in catering to their expectations. The rail vendors, whom will be educating once a week, 

will stand out as different from the rest of the vendors, their quality products and their 

confidence will also speak of our project. We would also be blogging on various social 

entrepreneurship blogs and use twitter to build our team. 

 

 

Required Budget 

We wish to start initially with 20 vendors, 10 on the central line and 10 on the western line. This 

is the break up of budget that we would require to start this project –  

Apron + Tray per vendor – Rs 400 

To supply one vendor with food products worth a week’s sale – Rs 600 

Total Amount per vendor – Rs 1000 

Total Scholarship required for 20 vendors – Rs 20,000 

The other expenses such as on education, stationary and notebooks will be incurred by us. 

 

We are extremely passionate about this project and we want to bring a significant change to 

the current way of vending for the benefit of both the vendors and the commuters. We look 

forward to support from Life Unlimited for our passion.