This is a human pulled transport which came into vogue in 19th century. This two wheeled cart with the sitting capacity of one or 2 people is dragged by human force. The puller in Hindi language is known as Rickshawala. Sometimes these fellows are termed as coolies. Over the time these man pulled rickshaws are discovered in many of the Asian countries and are replaced by cycle rickshaw or the motor driven rickshaw. The transport in India has undergone a drastic change from Rickshaw & Auto Rickshaw in India.
If we trace back the history of rickshaw we find that the old form of rickshaws were having iron shod wooden wheels and the passengers used hand seats. With the passage of time to with the invention of rubber in 20th century the wooden wheels were replaced with rubber tires and the hand seats found place with cozy spring made seats. These rickshaws became a popular mode of transport in India since the British times on account of their door to door service. They were able to enter the narrow alleys easily as the other carts like ox carts and horse carts did not have the same privilege.
The History of Rickshaw & Auto Rickshaw in India
If we trace back the origin of rickshaw we find that this machine was invented first in France in 17th century to fulfill the demands of public transport and were termed as “ Vinaigrette”which had affinity with the hard carts used by vinegar sellers. Later on much reformed rickshaw was invented in Japan in 1869 AD by Izumi yosuke. In the earlier times the sedan chairs known as palanquins in India were used and carried by 2 or more people, but in this four of transportation only a simple man was used.
Rickshaw and Auto Rickshaw in India
After the industrial revolution in England drastic changes took place. There has been a mass exodus of people from the rural part to the cities in search of jobs. In 19th century man pulled rickshaw attained a great significance in not only India but across Asian continental. As in 1870 Izumi Yosuke and his other 2 friends got a license from the Tokyo government to build and sell rickshaws, a boom happened in manufacture and nearly 5000 rickshaws got operational. This was for the common folk and for the affluent people as well, The well of people had their own rickshaws to various other Asian countries such as Singapore, In India rickshaw appeared first in Shimla in 1880 and nearly some time later came on Kolkata in 1914. This became a popular means of transport in Calcutta.The narrow lanes of Calcutta then had some 6600 hand drawn rickshaw licences issued by the Calcutta municipal corporation amazingly those rickshaws are still working even after a passage of more than 100 odd years you will be amused to see these pre Victorian rickshaws still carrying people,These rickshaws can carry two people at a time drawn by human puller who runs with a bell in hand warning the pedestrians they may cover 30-40 kilometres in a day hauling the loaded rickshaw earning a paltry 10 dollars for the hard work in the entire day. Presently not only in Kolkata but in entire India cycle Rickshaw & battery rickshaw are gaining much popularity for being environment friendly.
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Rickshaw & Auto Rickshaw wala in Indian movies.
The rickshawalas of Kolkata got recognition with the novel “city of joy” written by Dominique lapiere in 1985 the Bimal roy in his treatise Do Beegha Jameen portrayed the misery of a poor farmer who leaves his village to become a rickshawwala. The life of rickshawala have been a popular theme of bollywood also. In 1973 a Bollywood movie was released by the same name with Randhir kapoor, Mala sinha and neetu singh in the lead roles. Rickshawala (2021) is directed by Ram Kamal Mukherjee in Bengali and has kasturi chakraborty and Avinash Dwivedi in the lead roles. Nirhua rickshawala (2008) became very popular Bhojpuri language.
Auto rickshaw in India.
Auto rickshaw is a motor powered machine. This is a 3 wheeled vehicle run by diesel, petrol, CNG or Battery. They are called by various names such as 3 wheelers, tuk tuks, baby taxi etc. This is a very common transport in India. Bajaj auto in India is the largest manufactures of autorickshaws in India. This machine is made by a frame resting on three wheels and engine and has drop down curtains. In 1930 Japan invented autorickshaw and with the elapse of time they became a popular mode of transport in South East Asian countries. Presently in many of Indian cities these autorickshaws either run on CNG or on batteries.
Top auto rickshaw in India
Tuk tuk auto rickshaw, TVS auto rickshaw, Piaggio, Mahindra auto
E rickshaw in India
After Rickshaw & autorickshaw on account of cost efficiency and to save the environment the E rickshaws were invented. E rickshaws mileage is very good. Now you can find battery wala rickshaw on Indian roads, Exide industries initiated E rickshaw vehicle in India. There are several E rickshaw, Vidhyut E rickshaw etc. Electric rickshaw price is nearly 3 lack INR. In your Delhi Agra Jaipur tour you can hire E rickshaw for the monumental tour of for pick up and drop from the railway station. In recent time parth pratim chakrabarti invented to do in Kolkata. In Toto brush less DC motor is used which is made in India and China, E rickshaws are very popular in Delhi NCR also and there are nearly 25000 registered E rickshaws in Delhi only. E rickshaws have nearly one third of the total autorickshaw market.
My rickshaw life
Many biographies relating to the life of rickshawala are popular in India. There are several videos on You tube such as Chotu Dada Rickshawala. In reality the shift from human rickshawala to autowala has been good an huminatarian grounds. I remember my childhood when I as a child used to go on rickshaw along with my schoolmates on a rickshaw. The poor rickshawala used to take us daily without fail and on elevated road he used to drag the rickshaw with full might. Sometimes some of us used to help him by giving a thrust to his vehicle and having fun. He like some others came from his village to earn a livelihood and to feed his children. As a child we never knew his hardships. We used to wonder when we knew he had no house and just lived under same bridge, had no basic amenities.
This man whom we used to call Kaka served us incessantly for 10 years. During few holidays when he was un well. Once for 3 consecutive days while he did not turn up, my mum got enraged and we decided to walk up to his dwelling place mentioned by him. As we reached and inquired about him, we were shocked to hear about his sad demise. I happened to see my rickshaw without kaka. What else I noticed a earthen pot of water. Some clothes in rags, sandals and a wooden bed with tears in eyes I as an adult pay tribute to that old kaka. This instance is a source to know the hardships of rickshawalas life and the treatment they get from the police and the civil society.
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Rickshaw tours are getting very popular around the world as they one the easy mode of transport to feel the pulse of alien land. If you come in India Tour and land at IGI Delhi you can book half day rickshaw tour of Delhi around Jama Masjid.
You can enjoy taking a tour in a traditional Japanese rickshaw if you visit Tokyo. If you come to the city of the Taj Mahal. You can enjoy the top activity of rickshaw ride in Taj Ganj area around the Taj Mahal or you can witness the busy Kinari Bazar Agra in a cycle rickshaw. Similarly if you are in the pink city jaipur rickshaw tour can be a good idea to explore the bazaars of Jaipur. In these rickshaw tours you get a seat of in the man pulled rickshaw and there is a local tour guide who briefs you about the city, culture and other historical highlights. If you abhor riding a man pulled rickshaw you can choose booking tuk tuk for the local sightseeing in Delhi or Jaipur.If you are interested to have a tryst with long gone past then on your Kolkata tour we can arrange a hand pulled rickshaw ride you can feel the life of the rickshaw pullers ,how they manage their tough life .