A 22-year-old entrepreneur, Rajkumar Janagam, in a bid to popularise bicycling as a dependable mode of transport, has established Cycle Chalao, an environment-friendly project in Mumbai. The project seeks to create a bicycle-renting network throughout Mumbai. His aim is to help create dedicated lanes and special parking stands for bicycles. The project will be self sustaining as it is expected to earn its revenue through advertisements on bicycles and parking stands.
Cycle Chalao is among 45 international social projects looking to secure a place at the US based Unreasonable Institute that promotes and trains social entrepreneurs. Every year the Institute, based in Boulder, Colorado, chooses 25 ‘unreasonable’ entrepreneurs who undergo a rigorous six-week training programme. Unreasonable here means “being very exceptional, whose ventures fulfill a pressing social or environmental need”. The Institute provides would-be entrepreneurs an intensive programme to hone their skills and guidance from 60 top mentors. The entrepreneurs also get to meet prominent venture capitalists and investors, and a chance to build lasting relations with them. Prospective student-entrepreneurs should be able to raise the $8,000 fee (about र3.6 lakh) for the programme and their project should benefit at least one million people to be eligible for the course.