A journey that sometime goes on smoothly, sometime it ends very abruptly in spite of its having much utility. Century-old handcart rickshaw met such a fate that has placed it at the end of the road. A handcart rickshaw that has long been doing yeoman's service to us will be no more with the announcement of our local government for its complete elimination on the ground of loss of dignity. At present livelihood of 50,000 rickshaw-pullers alongwith their families are in jeopardy due to this untimely announcement.
First it was introduced in Kolkata approximately in the year 1890 for carriage of goods by members of the Chinese community. Gradually, most of the rickshaw-pullers came from Bihar to take charge of it of this labourious vehicle. Later it was given license as a passenger car.
In spite of our hectic life style and glossy wrap all around our environment, this man-powered vehicle is still grappling with its own. Besides procuring two-square meals a day, its easy access to any lane and by-lane in times of exigency and above all its necessity as a saviour from water logging during monsoon time still deserved value in our life. Although this century-old vehicle is on the brink of extinction, the memory of its precious contribution in our daily life will always make a resonance in our mind to get on it again and again.