The Ethics of Using Cycle Rickshaws in India

19 October 2013

Do you have qualms about paying another human to transport you around town? What about if he had only one good leg?!

I like using cycle rickshaws in Delhi. That was after I got over the “how inhumane is that in today’s world?” and realized that instead of using other noisy, polluting means of transport (auto rickshaws/tuk tuks) I should be supporting the livelihoods of these guys. I got in this rickshaw and as we got moving, I saw that he was using his right hand and a stick tied to the right pedal along with his left leg to propel us forward. Instead of jumping out and feeling sorry for him, I paid Raju double.

India really challenges your ethical constructs and you can’t help but smile at the perseverance of the less well-off.