Women e-rickshaw drivers: Tales of success, built around Statue of Unity

Jyoti Kumari Tarvi, 35, is a tribal woman. She can only read and write her name and speak in broken Hindi.

Published: 21st February 2022 04:27 AM  |   Last Updated: 21st February 2022 08:25 AM   |  A+A-

These e-autorickshaws are driven by tribal women from nearby villages. (Photo | EPS)

Express News Service

KEVADIYA(GUJARAT):  Jyoti Kumari Tarvi, 35, is a tribal woman. She can only read and write her name and speak in broken Hindi. She calls herself an ‘aatmnirbhar mahila”. Not without reason. She drives an e-autorickshaw. 

“Mai e-rickshaw aur ghar dono chalati hu,” she says proudly. In and around Kevadia, near the country’s first green energy certified Ekatanagar railway station, 60 women drive e-rickshaws. This station is for persons who want to visit the Statue of Unity, of Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel. 

Pratima Kumari, 25, is another tribal girl from Kevadia village, among the 60 women e-rickshaw drivers.

“Before 2021, tribal women were living indignified lives. But now, a new beginning has been made. We earn Rs 1,000 to Rs 1,400 a day. After paying the daily rent of the vehicle, we take home Rs 700 to Rs 1,100.”

Rahul Patel, spokesperson of the management of the Statue of Unity, said that these women from nearby villages are earning from driving e-rickshaws after being trained by the government at the Ekatanagar skill development centre.

“There is a plan in place to impart formal driving training to more than 260 tribal women who are from extremely poor families. They drive and also provide information to the passengers about the other places to be visited after visiting the Statue of Unity.”

Their services have so far attracted the attention of many social media users.

Patel said that since October 31, 2018, more than 75 lakh tourists including a huge number of foreigners have visited the place.

And most of them enjoyed their ride in these e-rickshaws driven by the tribal women.


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