City cyclists rally to reclaim roads | india | Hindustan Times
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City cyclists rally to reclaim roads

The city’s cycling enthusiasts got together at 5.30 pm for Mumbai’s second ‘critical mass’ cycling event — a 6.8-km ride from Shivaji Park, Dadar to the Haji Ali signal, reports Dhamini Ratnam.

india Updated: Feb 01, 2009 01:09 IST
Dhamini Ratnam

Narrow roads, limited lanes, fast-moving traffic and incessant honking make Mumbai a cyclist’s nightmare. But when you are riding with 74 other cyclists, the journey is more worthwhile.

The city’s cycling enthusiasts got together at 5.30 pm for Mumbai’s second ‘critical mass’ cycling event — a 6.8-km ride from Shivaji Park, Dadar to the Haji Ali signal.

Critical mass cycling is about cyclists asserting their right to be counted as traffic and reclaim the city’s roads.

Planned for the last Saturday of every month, the event hopes to create awareness about cycling as a means of travelling.

Malad resident Anoop Rajan, who played an important role in organising the event, cycles daily to his office in Andheri (East).

“I came across the critical mass website last year and thought of doing the same in Mumbai,” said Rajan, who is associated with Thane-based environment group Hope (Here On Project Environment).

“I would approach random cyclists on the road, and even started groups on Facebook and Orkut to spread the word.”

Rajan believes cycling is an immensely viable option and ought to be taken more seriously.

Kalina resident Nelson Joseph (29) began cycling for fun, but then found it more convenient than other modes of transportation.

“Once you get used to riding, you realise that it’s one of the easiest ways of getting around the city,” he said.

Rama Bishnoi (47) from Khar cycles because she cares for the environment. “Private modes of transportation are a strict no-no. If I’m not cycling, I take the train,” she said.

“Riding in a group sure beats riding alone,” said Mahim resident Prajikti Pai (20).

“The traffic takes you more seriously,” she added.