Aug 25, 2008, IPF Seminar Hall
Speakers: Shri Umesh Upadhyaya, Eminent Media Personality
Dr. Pradeep Kumar Sharma, Executive Director, Centre for Rural Development (CRD)
Realising the importance of microfinance that can be facilitated through collective effort, the IPF organised a talk on ‘Rickshaw Bank’ to find ways how to make millions of rickshaw-pullers owners of the rickshaw they pull all across the cities of India. Many of the findings have shown that an overwhelming majority of rickshaw-pullers do not have their own rickshaw and as a result they hire it on an exorbitant rent. In turn, instead of improving their conditions, that traps them in the shackle of poverty and misery.
Explaining the core concept of Rickshaw Bank, Dr Sharma said that a rickshaw-puller is given an asset-based loan that is repayable on a daily basis. On full and timely repayment of the loan the ownership of the rickshaw is transferred to the rickshaw-puller. He stated that this concept has already changed the lives of many rickshaw-pullers in Guwahati, Lucknow and Allahabad. He also asserted that this scheme has also led to the prevention of drug addiction among rickshaw-pullers.
The evening concluded with a lively question-answer session where Dr. Sharma elaborately answered all the questions that were put up by the participants.