An Indian Civilizational Perspective

Beggary and the Fortune at the Bottom of the Pyramid!

This story is a case study for Prahlad’s "Fortune at the Bottom of the Pyramid" with a twist!

Just read on Acchorian’s blog on the remuneration of the beggars. He cites an article where a local blogger in Bangalore did a rough calculation and found that a beggar on the MG Road may be earning Rs. 24,000 on an average. That’s fairly good for someone in Bangalore – the only issue being how much of a "salary" or "revenue growth" he/she might be experiencing?

The most amazing rub really comes from these stats on the left for the remuneration of a beggar in Pakistan! There a beggar would earn an average of Rs. 2500 a DAY – or roughly with a 30 working days a month (beggars would probably earn more on normal festivals/holidays wont they?) – a staggering Rs. 75,000/month!! I am not sure of the source of these stats from Acchorian’s blog but they are mindboggling nevertheless!

"Well, very soon I found that I was saving considerable sums of money. I do not mean that any beggar in the streets of London could earn 700 pounds a year — which is less than my average takings — but I had exceptional advantages in my power of making up, and also in a facility of repartee, which improved by practice and made me quite a recognized character in the City. All day a stream of pennies, varied by silver, poured in upon me, and it was a very bad day in which I failed to take 2 pounds. "As I grew richer I grew more ambitious, took a house in the country, and eventually married, without anyone having a suspicion as to my real occupation. My dear wife knew that I had business in the City. She little knew what.

~ "The Man with the Twisted Lip" (Sherlock Holmes by Arthur Conan Doyle

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