“HANG­ING AROUND MORGUES IS A WAY OF LIFE NOW”

India Today - - GOOD NEWS - A for­mer soft­ware pro­fes­sional, Shruthi Reddy is the owner and founder of the five-mem­ber start-up An­thyesti Funeral Ser­vices, and its al­lied non-profit or­gan­i­sa­tion, An­thyesti Foun­da­tion. An­thyesti is a one-stop ser­vice that takes care of all the for­mali

The chal­lenges we faced started right from the ‘recce stage’. I was asked why I was hang­ing around a cre­ma­to­rium while gath­er­ing in­for­ma­tion. Many felt threat­ened that we were going to be a dig­i­tal medium and that we would be in com­pe­ti­tion with them. Another chal­lenge was reach­ing out to many closeknit busi­ness com­mu­ni­ties who felt that we would in­trude dur­ing a pri­vate time. ‘You want to out­source our shraadh cer­e­monies?’ they’d ask us. My par­ents don’t un­der­stand it. Why would I quit work­ing from home in the soft­ware in­dus­try earn­ing a hefty sum to hang around in morgues and cre­ma­to­ri­ums?

While many hearse, AC van op­er­a­tors and freezer box providers were ini­tially ap­pre­hen­sive, telling them that their busi­ness would still be theirs and that we would func­tion only as the ‘Uber of funeral ser­vices’ helped. Our helpline is avail­able 24x7 and, be­ing a ‘boot­strap or­gan­i­sa­tion’, there is no one to field calls at night but me. Death, after all, isn’t known to come at rea­son­able hours.”

When you de­cide to ded­i­cate your life to a big­ger cause, the small things take care of them­selves.”

SUBIR HALDER

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from India

© PressReader. All rights reserved.