At 60, Gagandeep Khosla, a chartered accountant from New Delhi, is on a solo bicycle expedition of 4,300 kms from Leh to Kanyakumari. The mission, he says, is to generate funds to provide quality education to brilliant children of the poor families.
An alumnus of The Scindia School at Gwalior, Khosla reached Sagar on Wednesday evening riding on the North-South Corridor. The expedition that began on September 21 at Leh will culminate either on October 18 or 19 at Kanyakumari.
“The decision to take up the expedition was not easy,” says Khosla. It could only happen because of support of the members of The Scindia School Old Boys’ Association (SOBA).
He is a member of the 1974 pass-out batch of the famous school.
The 28-day expedition will reconnect Khosala with a number of members of SOBA, and hopes to make his dream come true.
Khosla’s batch mate and SOBA member Devendra Bhatnagar is also travelling with him in a vehicle for logistic support. “He (Khosla) requires between 7,500 to 8,000 calories per day. The light meal gives him around 1,500 calories and rest is given to him in form of fluids, including fruit juices and energy drinks,” says Bhatnagar said.
“At initial stage, our plan is to build up around `1 crore as the scholarship fund for the needy students,” he says. The fund is going to grow every year.
As a businessman, Khosla, along with his wife Ishi, founded Whole Foods India in 2001, a healthy foods company in the NCR.
Khosla says scholarships will initially be provided to the financially poor students keen to study in The Scindia School.
“In future, we can also try to provide scholarship to other schoolchildren,” he said.
The bicycle expedition has two phases -- the first one was from Leh to Chandigarh, and he had to cross five mountain passes with highest one of 17,500 feet on mountain cycle.
The second phase is on carbon fibre bicycle, covering 150 to 160 kms daily. Every day, the cycling starts with a short breakfast and lunch intervals.
Members of The Scindia Old Boys Association (SOBA) at Sagar welcomed Khosla and are extending all possible help to make the expedition a grand success.
“We are all with him (Khosla), and will extend all possible help for the noble cause,” says Aditya Rajput, a leading businessman and a SOBA member in Sagar.