Three years ago the state’s new chief minister Nitish Kumar adopted a “gender agenda” and set about redressing his state’s endemic gender imbalances in an attempt to boost development in one of India’s most backward states. His vision was to bring a sense of independence and purpose to his state’s young women, and the flagship initiative of this agenda is…a project that gives schoolgirls [about $38] to purchase a bicycle… In 3 years in Bihar alone, 871,000 schoolgirls have taken to the saddle as a result of the scheme. The number of girls dropping out of school has fallen and the number of girls enrolling has risen from 160,000 [to] 490,000.

How a bicycling initiative is changing the future of girls in rural India – wonderful yet unsurprising, given the bicycle’s history as an emancipation and liberation agent for women.

(via curiositycounts)