Centre for Rural Development
Centre for Rural Development (CRD) is an NGO working in the developmental sector especially to empower rural people, urban poor and marginalized population.
Dipbahan Rickshaw Project was initiated by the Indian Institute of technology (IIT) Guwahati with an aim to redesign rickshaw to be more aerodynamic, lighter than the traditional vehicle, safer seating arrangement making easier on the puller and more comfortable for the passengers.
This design was finally transferred to Centre for Rural Development, Guwahati and few key personals were trained for manufacturing. Thereafter, entire manufacturing of Dipbahan was handed over to the CRD.
To introduce and popularize Dipbahan, concept of Rickshaw Bank was introduced which had the vital factor of creating capital amount to start microfinance. The Dipbahan was designed to provide advertising space at the rear end. Corporates such as HLL, OIL and ONGC used this space.
Earnings were invested in fabrication of Dipbahan and the rickshaws were provided to rickshaw pullers on microcredit. The pullers were actually paying a hiring charge of Rs. 25 per day and this was converted to repayment and after 300 days the Dipbahan was owned by the puller. The amount received was reinvested for fabrication of more Dipbahan and thus more employment was generated.
In addition, 5 members of the pullers were grouped and made guarantors of each other.
Five such groups were assigned to a rickshaw garage for maintenance of the Dipbahans and collection of daily repayment amount. Further the rickshaw bank provides pullers with municipality licenses, photo identity cards and uniform. Insurance facility for the puller, passengers and the vehicles is also being provided. Health checkups of the pullers and their families are regularly carried out. Other benefits include bank accounts, cooking gas connectivity, and emergency loan on need based purchase items.
Key Contact Person:
Dr. Pradip Kumar Sarmah