We are born, we tippy-tippy top our way through our school in our half pants towards adulthood, we then hustle for our dreams and our people, and jostle towards old-age, making memories along the way, meeting and leaving people. Very few among us, however, think beyond our dreams and our life. And if you are one of the rare few, you do not have to be among the Bill Gates and Warren Buffetts of the world to really make an impact. There’s someone who can show us how.
Meet Uday Ramlal Jadhav, an autorickshaw driver from Gujarat, a state in Western India. He has a unique way of running his autorickshaw. He relies on the concept of the “gift economy.” He doesn’t charge his customers – the ones that take rides in his auto – in the usual manner. Rather, every day, he pays for his first customer from his pocket and each customer can pay for the successive customer as per his/her wish.
Further, his autorickshaw has all the amenities that you can possibly think of. Some snacks for his customers, a reading light for customers who love to read, a fan, and a dustbin to maintain cleanliness are all part of his autorickshaw.
Jadhav started out in 2010. The idea popped in his mind when he met Mr Mahendra, a blind person who needed a ride. Jadhav dropped Mahendra to his destination. Mahendra didn’t have money to offer to Jadhav but left Jadhav with words that stuck to him forever, “Whenever I’ll remember you, I’ll have a smile on my face.” He decided to bring this smile to all his customers’ faces.
It wasn’t an easy journey for Jadhav, to begin with. He faced criticism from his family as this was his only source of income. The passengers used to call him crazy for risking his source of livelihood. But now everybody supports him in his endeavour. Jadhav also volunteers at Seva Café, which also runs on the same concept of “gift economy.”
People like Jadhav, truly, make the world a better and happier place to live in. Did you bring a smile on somebody’s face today?