Here's a thought -- rather a scheme -- that comes to my mind once in a while. Alas, it is going to remain a thought and in never going to materialise, but no harm sharing it with you all. Who knows, some of you may even thank me.
What does one rupee mean to you? Forget one rupee, what does a 50-paise coin mean to you? Nothing, right? Even a beggar considers it an insult when you drop a 50-paise coin onto his or her palm. And it is only once in a blue moon that you actually find a 50-paise in your wallet these days. If a one-rupee or a 50-paise coin drops off your pocket, you are most likely to let it go because in order to pick it up, you have to bend, and bending can be such a pain, more painful than losing just half a rupee.
Such a useless piece of metal, the 50-paise coin! What can it get you these days, apart from a toffee? Even matchboxes cost Re 1. In other words, a 50-paise coin is something anyone can part with, even the poorest of the poor.
Now let's do the math. The population of India, till a couple of years ago, stood at 1,139,964,932. Assuming that on the average, four people make a household, the figure tranlates into 2,84,991,233 households. Go to each of these households and beg/ask for a 50-paise coin. If your ego comes in the way, invent a cause: child care, cancer care, saving the planet, saving the animals, and so on. Your enterprise will increase your bank balance by Rs 1,42,495,616! The idea might sound a joke, but the money isn't!
By my calculation (I am a bit drunk now), the amount works out to Rs 14 crore. Even if you invest Rs 4 crore in reaching every nook and corner of India to collect the 50-paise coin from each household, you are still left with Rs 10 crore. Ten fucking crores! And considering that lakhs of sympathetic households will oblige you with a lot more than just 50 paise, you can easily add a few more crores to the amount collected. That should make you worth about, say, Rs 15 crore. Fifteen fucking crores! You can either buy a house in London or a house each in Mumbai, Delhi, Bangalore, Chennai and Kolkata.
Too lazy to travel or plan for things outside your city? Never mind. Stick to your city. The population of Chennai, I am told, is 4,631,704. By my calcutation, that should work out to 1,157,926 households. Now go to every household and ask for a 50-paise coin, and in no time you will be richer by Rs 5,78,963. Nearly Rs 6 lakh! And considering that thousands of sympathetic households will oblige you with a lot more than just 50 paise, you can easily be richer by Rs 10 lakh overnight!
Now imagine if you were to collect one rupee instead of 50 paise from every household by coming up with a scheme, 'Save the planet: one household, one rupee.' You would be richer by Rs 20 lakh overnight. Considering that thousands of sympathetic households and business houses will oblige you with a lot more than just one rupee, you can safely hope to make Rs 30 or Rs 40 lakh overnight. Who needs a housing loan from HDFC?
If you are shamelessly lazy enough to venture out of even your neighbourhood, then collect Re 1 from every household in, say, T Nagar or Adyar. In a matter of weeks, you would collect enough to make a trip to Bangkok and get a Thai massage, if not a trip to Paris. I would chose Paris, to take a look at the cafes where Hemingway wrote. But I just don't have the time to beg for so much of money, so I would rather earn it one of these days and take off. But then, it is not a bad idea at all: to go door to door and ask for 50 paise.