Thapa explains how during the most desperate times, people can become entrepreneurial.
Getting bank loans to buy vehicles to start taxi hiring service, has been a major risk. He says many taxi and ambulance drivers still do not want to take the risk of buying their own vehicles to start a business.
“Without risks, you can never hope to succeed and with emotional and moral support from my wife, I found the courage, and it has really paid off,” says Thapa. He adds that as an entrepreneur, one of things he has learnt is that maintaining a good relationship with his customers can be the key to success.
“You need discipline and respect for your customers even if they are very demanding so that they can keep coming back to you for service. Most of my customers call me based on my reputation and their word of mouth has helped to market my name,” says Thapa.
“At first, I thought the job of khalasi was degrading but I know it was a stepping stone for me to learn so much about the transport business and I am glad I started as a khalasi,” he says.
Thapa shared his story with his daughter only recently and he says she beamed with pride when she heard about how her parents had been through hard times and emerged successful. He wants his daughter to also become tough, face challenges and find a way to survive and become successful.
“Going to foreign countries for education or jobs should not always be our alternative. There are lots of opportunities in Nepal if you know how to tap into them. But of course, it takes time to become successful,” he says.
And he throws in a nugget of wisdom: “In our life, there is no work that we should be ashamed of. What we should be ashamed of is living as social parasites.”