AIBCA- All India Bullock Cart Association has decided to demonstrate a “Peace Rally” urging their demands to be met over their proposal to “increase bullock cart fares”,following the footsteps of Auto Association. Now, Bullock Cart owners demand justice and are seeking “fare hikes” for their bullock cart transportation. The bullock carts have gone off farms,roads & highways and are adamant in protesting until their demands are met.
I caught up with Ram,a member of AIBCA. This is what Ram had to say, “Our bullocks toil day in and day out in the farms,villages,bull fights,roads etc. Its unfair to treat them with such low dignity. “Gai hamara Maata hai,aur Bull hamara pita” [Cow is our Mother and Bull being her husband is our father],So,we should give Bulls the same respect we give to our Mother Cow”. On asked what AIBCA’s demands are,this is what Ram had to tell us:
1>New Fare: “We have now planning to increase the starting meter fare to Rs 100/-“
2>Fare Per Km: Rs 30/ – Bullocks travel on foot,while autos travel on wheels. Hence bullocks spend more energy and stamina to pull our carts along with passengers and their luggages. Hence our price should be 21/- more than auto fare
3>Waiting Charge: Whenever our passenger gets out of the cart to attend nature calls,sight seeing,capturing photos or gazing at our village belles, we charge them Rs 35/-
Gazing at Village belles- Rs 40/-
Talking or capturing pictures with them will attract a fee of Rs 100/-
Teasing them: Rs 500/- as we don’t tolerate eve teasing.
No no,we are not using village belles to make fast bucks..but instead we are safeguarding the interests of our village belles.
4>Intervals and Time Restrictions: Our bullock carts will be off roads due to lunch break from Noon 1pm to 2 pm. Its time for our bullocks to hog on grass and fodder after their tiresome work schedule since morning.Also our carts will be off roads from 10pm to 5am. We need to return to our carts to “Bullock Cart Depot” after 10 PM. Our bullocks need rest after a tiresome day.
5>Night Rates:The night rates after 8pm is 1 and 1/2 times the normal fare. We do not wish to get into argument with our customers and we believe that our customers are aware of our new rates. “Price charts” will be produced to our customers on demand!
6>Luggage charge: Upto 10 Kgs free
For every 10 kg,its Rs 500/-. If luggages are placed on both the sides of bulls,then its Rs 500/- each.
Maximum luggage allowed is 50 kgs. Any luggage exceeding 50 kgs will not be borne by our bullocks and the commuter needs to discard the luggage no matter,how important it is.
7>Miscellaneous Expenses: The commuter also needs to pay for food,water and fodder for our bulls.
On enquiring,how they are going to charge the fares per km on account of absence of “meters” in bullock carts, Mr Ram smiled and said,”We are intelligent too!! It has been taken care of!” We are planning to install meters on the horns of bulls”.
On asked whether,the commuter will agree over baggage restrictions,Mr Ram angrily said,” When people can carry 23kgs correctly while flying in Lufthansa airlines and when they are ready to pay $100[which is about Rs 5000/-] extra for every extra bag, can’t they pay just Rs 500/- for extra baggage here?”
It seems that the bulls have disappeared off the farms leaving the farmers worried.The farms look barren,crops have withered and the lands are un-plowed. The matadors are also worried as bulls are now not participating in “bull fights”. The bulls have become adamant and have promised themselves not to compromise until their demands are met.
Well, wishing AIBCA,All the Best!!! :)