To mark February 14th, Valentine’s day, 42 students from various colleges in Kolkata decided to pull rickshaws on its thoroughfares with those who ply them as passengers.
Those 42 students also included girls from various colleges.
Hand pulled rickshaws were pulled by the students along a three kilometre stretch between the Bank of India Crossing on Amherst Street to M G Road via B B Ganguly Street and College Street in central Kolkata.
While 42 students pulled the rickshaws, from over 20 different colleges in the city around 65 students accompanied them through the entire route.
“We took it as our turn, to show some love, respect and appreciation to those rickshaw pullers who work for 365 days tirelessly and rarely get any recognition,” said a student Puja Gupta, who participated in the event.
She also said, “it was not at all easy to pull that rickshaw. I myself pulled it and my hands are aching now. I can feel the pain and hardwork they do for earning few rupees”.
One of the organiser from the event, Saptak Biswas, networked with number of his friends from various colleges to spread the move all around.
He said, many rickshaw pullers live in nearby Sealdah-Jorasanko-Rabindra Sarani pockets in Kolkata and many of them are from different states who live here and pull rickshaws for their livelihood.
Basically, students approached themselves to the rickshaw pullers to talk with them as most of them didn’t have the mobile phones. Most of them did not understood Bengali as they do not Bengal from the city but from other states. The rickshaw pullers happily handed over their rickshaws to the students when they were explained the intention to do so.
“It was so mesmerizing and a different experience. For once I was so much embarrassed sitting in my own rickshaw because a girl of my daughters age was pulling the rickshaw , but she asked me to sit back and relax,” an elderly rickshaw puller, satyen from Gaya district in Bihar told to PTI.