During COVID-19, millions have lost their jobs and expats were forced to find a new way of living for survival. From the Indian state of Kerala, an ex-NRI Eldhos who has worked as a nurse in the Middle East, previously, has found a unique way of earning an income - lotus farming.
Even though he has over ten years of experience in his profession, due to the pandemic, like many, he had to head back home. However, it was hard for him to get a job in the same field in Kerala. That's how he entered into his new venture.
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According to Indian news reports, Eldhos supplies different types of lotus flowers and its tubers based on demand.
Subsequently, he started sending the ordered items soon after the lockdown was over. He has customers in different states of the country.
All his trading from promotion to sales are managed through an online portal. As soon as he posts that a tuber is ready, people start contacting him. Eldhos also shares pictures and stories through his blog- 'Raj Florals'
Even after his sales, he continues to offer tips to customers till the plant blooms. As the tubers are expensive, it is the seller's responsibility to ensure its growth, Eldhos said while talking to a local news source.
He also said that it gives him peace of mind along with a decent income. One plant fetches at least Rs1,000 (Dh50).
Sahasradala Padmam (Thousand petal ) is a variety of lotus, which costs Rs3,000 ( Dh149). There are other expensive and different varieties like Buddha's seat lotus.
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Apparently, Eldhos earns an income of over Rs30,000 (Dh1,498) every month.
As a trained nurse, he had to spend a lot on his education but had to leave due to the crisis. He says that support from family is a key element in success.