I was married at 13, so I never could finish the important 10th grade exam. My husband was mentally unstable but I was too young to understand the situation. I just saw that I had to support my family.

I had no special skills but I had learned to make kohbar (wedding chamber) paintings and aripan (ritual rice paste designs) and these helped me earn a living. I used to sell paintings at piece rate to different buyers. The situation at my house was so dire that I kept myself awake every night just to finish one painting. Still I could not cover the expenses of my seven family members. Things changed in 2011 when I joined the Janakpur Women’s Development Center and my income as an artist became stable.