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    Baniya Bechara


    Two young men seemed engrossed in discussion outside the JP tea stall in D-School. They were talking about how baniyas, the richest caste are the

    stingiest lot in the country. ” They spend money only on themselves and not on others.” One of them said.

    Baniya is undoubtedly the most maligned community in India. A TOI article ridiculed the baniyas for lobbying against FDI in multi-brand retail(While I thought that they were the only ones who welcomed it).

    It is hard for people to believe that economic pursuits of an individual could ever converge with the societal goals of the nation.

    To dispel the myth surrounding the baniyas, I decided to pen down about one such baniya from a sleepy town in India. He is a man with a shrewd business sense. He has accumulated enough wealth to last for a lifetime. But, he refuses to shut down his mustard oil business because it would cause unemployment to many people.

    A simple man with limited need, he could have chosen to live in peace!

    All his employees have a decent standard of living, a bank account and a basic insurance policy. He even tries to ensure that each one of them has a roof above their heads. He finances the education,marriage etc of their children. Poor people cycle for miles to come to him for an interest free loan, for they know that they won’t be refused. He makes regular anonymous donations to orphanages and schools.

    He has encouraged self-employment among the younger generation in the town. He invests in their projects if he thinks it is financially viable. He has purchased innumerable insurance and mutual funds policies for the only reason that he was approached by a young and promising agent.

    Contrary to the expectations of some who think people related to commerce and business lack intellectual depth, he has passionate opinion on a range of issues. People often come to seek his valuable advice.

    Perhaps the greatest thing he has taught the people of the town is the value of credit-worthiness. People living in far-off places and having business interests in his area, often ask their clients to make their monetory payments to him because they feel that their money will be safe with him. They withdraw money from him at their own convenience, often after a year or two. This in effect is an interest free loan to him. He lends this amount to other business men for their working capital requirements at nominal interests and make profits(A cunning business man that he is).

    Inspite of all this , he is the biggest critique of NREGA(as he feels it destroys work culture) and won’t give away even a single penny to beggars. And yes, he is stingy by Indian standards.

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    • vishal mittal

      we baniya are the highest tax payer in INDIA and we BANIYA conributes the many ngo's and social issue bt we dnt give it by our names. yes we are the richest caste so what..?? i just wanna ask you which othe caste give their money to other.. n most of beggers begs bcoz they dnt want to work..

    • Dhairya Kumar

      Agar aap raat ko sote samay apni ghadi ke cell nikaal lete hain, to kasam tooti hui second ke kaante ki, Aap baniye hain. This line surely explains how Kanjoos baniyas Are!!! Hahahahaha !!! Nice article btw!

    • Chaitanya Rathi

      I would like to know the name of the personality you mentioned above in your article!!

    • Mridusmita Choudhury


    • Mridusmita Choudhury

      @ vishal mittal…I can't say about the tax.. Indians in general evade more tax than what they pay..
      And about the beggars.. the last para was a sarcasm.

    • sushant

      Loved this !! Because this is what the truth is and how people react towards it.
      Respect to your dad. I guess all our dad's are the same.
      Baniye jo hain ;)

    • Mridusmita Choudhury

      @Sushant.. Thank you :D

    • Mridusmita Choudhury

      @chaitanya.. He is my father :D

    • shashank

      for the bad karma of few baniyas we all baniyas get the blame..
      not fair.

    • Mridusmita Choudhury

      I totally agree with you Shashank

    • Athili Kadena

      Every person has their own invincible way of contributing to the society, only the politicians are the ones who show off of their achievements and contribution. Although it is invincible the sacrifice, hard work and service for the society will manifest slowly by itself and be rewarded manifold. Service to man is service to God.

    • Mridusmita Choudhury

      Very true Athili.. I like the optimism in your words

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