As a Bangladeshi-Canadian Muslim this makes me extremely proud. Atlast they have recognized this great man for his simple yet practical solution to eliminating poverty from the world. With his business venture he has enrichened himself as well as empowered thousands of poor, rural women. He also shattered stereotypes of the country, by allowing women not only to earn and make financial decisions for the family, but to act as a role model for others.
Just out of curiosity, and as a thought exercise, I wonder if such a project will work in Canada. For starters, Grameen Bank only lends to women - because they don't waste the money on gambling, drinks or women unlike their husbands. Pretty soon someone will bring a Charter challenge to that, citing discrimination by gender. Second, the bank uses a system of collective co-security. For example, if four people want the loan, the bank will assign it to one of them, but each of the four will have to co-sign as guarantor. When the first person pays it back, the loan goes to the second person, and so on. If the first person wants to default or slack off her project, the others pressurize her and "motivate" her to succeed. Could this be intimidation in Canada?
Interesting how concepts work differently across different cultures.
This year the Novel committee has struck twice; first by awarding the Literature prize to Orhan Pamuk of Turkey they have promoted freedom of expression, and second by awarding it to Muhammad Yunus they have promoted a practical way of fighting poverty and realising visions.
Tags: Muhammad Yunus Grameen Bank Nobel Peace Prize