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‘Dignity First’ Is The Resolve Of A Migrant Worker Turned Boss

Arunopol Seal, Vikesh Kumar, Rahul Kumar and Anwesha Konar

Video credit:  Harshika Tripathi



Rajesh Ravidas migrated from Jharkhand to Pune as a teenager to work in a fellow villager’s garage. Then 15, he picked up skills of denting and painting cars, eventually excelling at the job. But in the Pune garage, there were no wages paid, only food and shelter provided in return for the hard work Ravidas was doing.

Eight years later, he returned home.

Ravidas’s journey was captured in the Jharkhand Migration Survey that was carried out by a consortium of civil society organisations led by the Policy and Development Advisory Group (PDAG) under the Safe and Responsible Migration Initiative of the Jharkhand government.

The survey found that one of two migrant workers from the state were from the schedule caste community – that ranks at the bottom of India’s social hierarchy. Almost half of all migrant workers were in the 15-29 year age-group, like Ravidas.

PDAG presents Ravidas’s worker-to-entrepreneur journey as a video story in the second part of its Montages of Migration series. +8

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