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Give her today her salary cheque

Pregnancy for Debina didn’t mean having the plug pulled on her working life. They lived in a rented flat and Debina wanted to contribute to the family income.

delhi Updated: Sep 27, 2008 22:44 IST
Nivriti Butalia

Personal assistant at a private company | Kalkaji, New Delhi

The saas did not approve. It was bad enough that Mathew — Debina’s husband — would invest in the stock market for a living, but to also have the bahu play the money game was not cheerily accepted in the extended household. Debina laughs, adding that she probably should go see the recent release, Saas Bahu Aur Sensex, for she might just relate to it.

Pregnancy for Debina didn’t mean having the plug pulled on her working life. They lived in a rented flat and Debina wanted to contribute to the family income. So, for the better part of last year and even for a few months before that, when she was carrying their second child, Debina started investing in the markets from home. She learnt the ropes from her trader husband and began with a nominal amount.

Bobby, as her husband is fondly called, would advise her to invest “not more than Rs 10,000-20,000 on a single day”. On an average, Debina says she would make a profit of Rs 2,000-5,000 at the close of trading.

She traded from home till her second child was born, but then the uncertainty of the markets made her return to a regular nine-to-five job as a personal assistant, with office cubicles and all. While the mother of two enjoyed the time spent trading — “one computer window on intra-day trading, others on Yahoo Messenger and Orkut” — she was not looking to make a full-fledged career out of it.

Debina realises that her time was put to good use — “I ended up learning a lot.” Addicted to social networking back then, Debina was even a part of Orkut communities that would offer tips. “I would later suggest to my husband some of what I’d read on these communities, and he would often take up my ideas.”

There were losses, too. Not all of the Rs 5 lakh or so invested over a year came back. And it was for this uncertainty — and perhaps to pacify a flustered mom-in-law — that she missed her fixed salary. What did she do with the profits? “We have two young children to bring up,” she says. But every now and then, an evening out, a plush dinner or an addition to the winter wardrobe made the family’s life just that bit more comfortable.