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Last Updated: Friday, 16 June 2006, 13:54 GMT 14:54 UK
Dhaka rickshaw-puller: Moizuddin Miah
My name is Moizuddin Miah and I am 47 and a father of four, three daughters and one son. I come from the Jamalpur district of Bangladesh, about 250km north of Dhaka.

URBAN MIGRANT
Moizuddin Miah
Name: Moizuddin Miah
Age: 47
Lives: Dhaka
Work: Rickshaw-puller

I came to Dhaka to find a new job after I had to sell all my cultivatable land to pay for my daughter's marriage.

I sold the land for 50,000 taka [less than $1,000]. The dowry is a problem in our society.

The same thing happened when I married away my second daughter in 2005.

Now I do not have any land left to cultivate. It is not easy to get a job in Jamalpur, a very small locality.

Then one of my friends advised me to move to Dhaka because it is a big city where you can do different types of work.

Insulted and beaten

A friend of a friend took me to the owner of a rickshaw garage in Dhaka and gave me a reference.

Moizuddin Miah and his rickshaw
Moizuddin hopes to go back to farming

It took me three hours to learn the basics of plying a rickshaw.

Rich people in the city can insult and beat you any time if they think you are at fault. They will never hear your argument - they think they are always right.

I live in a slum at Sabujbagh in a very small room, 1.5 by 2.1 metres. I pay 700 taka [$10] a month for the room.

It has a corrugated tin roof with no kitchen and no toilet. Thirty-three other men live in the same compound and they all share two toilets. In the morning, residents queue for a chance. It is a not a good place to live but it is cheap.

But now I can earn around 250 taka daily, sometimes even 400, and after my rent and expenses I can send home around 3,000 taka. It is quite good money.

I could do the same job in Jamalpur but only earn 50 taka a day. You need to pay a price for everything and I am also paying.

Once I save enough money to buy a small piece of land that I can cultivate, I will certainly go back. I have another daughter to marry away.

In a society like Bangladesh, it is the father's duty to marry away his daughter. I do not think much about my son. He will survive somehow in a male-dominated society. He is now six years old.

Interview and pictures by Waliur Rahman




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