Mumbai’s dabbawalas get 5 e-cycles from Sena’s Aaditya Thackeray, 20 more in the offing
Yuva Sena chief Aaditya Thackeray on Monday distributed five battery-operated e-cycles to the city’s famous Dabbawalas in a bid to make it easier for them to distribute tiffins.
The e-cycles were handed over during a function at Wilson Gymkhana in Marine Lines. Similar e-bikes were also distributed among postmen.
According to Sena leader Pandurang Sakpal, twenty more such cycles will be distributed among Dabbawalas in the next few days.
“We distributed the cycles after a consultation with Yuva Sena chief Aditya Thackeray. We handed over five e-cycles today, and will give 20 more in the next few days,” he said.
Before ordering the e-cycles, a meeting was held with the Dabbawalas to understand their needs, and the cycle-maker was instructed to install carriers so that at least 40 tiffins can be loaded on them, Sakpal said.
At present the Dabbawalas use local trains and bicycles to deliver tiffins, mainly in offices.
However, with the advancing age, the task becomes arduous for many of them, said spokesperson of the Mumbai Dabbawala Association Subhash Talekar, adding that e-cycles would make the job more convenient.
However, since each e-cycle costs almost Rs 35,000, Dabbawalas would have found it difficult to bear the cost on their own, Talekar said, thanking Sakpal and the Shiv Sena.
Although one issue the Dabbawalas may face while using e-cycles is parking, he said, adding that feedback will be collected from those who will be using these e-cycles.
The e-cycles, manufactured by Nasik-based Nibe Motors, can be operated by a combination of pedalling and batteries. They are fitted with a 250-kilowatt electric motor and a 10-amp battery, and are capable of covering around 40-45 km on a full charge.
Apart from allowing for faster delivery of tiffins, the e-cycles will provide a major relief to Dabbawalas while climbing, effectively reducing the strain on their knees.