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The bicycle diaries: These residents drive home the green message

india Updated: May 11, 2013 01:06 IST


For a city that is synonymous with expressways, high-end vehicles and fatal accidents, the idea of a dedicated cycle track was unheard of till some time back.

But that was before a quaint group of enlightened residents had joined hands to form a Non-Motorised Transport (NMT) group.

The group has been instrumental in urging the Haryana Urban Development Authority (Huda) to work on a comprehensive NMT plan for Gurgaon with dedicated cycle and pedestrian tracks.

It works with the vision to provide equitable road space to pedestrians, cyclists and other users in the Millennium City.

Over 250 cyclists comprising of government officials, students, teachers, cycling enthusiasts and civic groups converged in Gurgaon to make the city bike-friendly. HT Photo/Manoj Kumar

Since the latter half of 2011, this group has been conducting unique events to create a pedestrian and cyclists-friendly city.

The 500-member public group last month organised a unique ‘Walk to Work’ initiative in collaboration with industry body Nasscom where CEOs walked to their offices from the nearest Metro station instead of taking their cars.

Students, government officials, teachers, cycling enthusiasts, civic groups cycled to create awareness about alternative transport systems. HT photo/Manoj Kumar

“Thankfully, the NMT idea has now percolated into the minds of the city authorities. The city will set a positive example for the rest of the country if the plan gets the green signal,” Nisha Singh, a city councillor and one of the key group members.

The group also introduced Gurgaon to Columbia’s Ciclovia concept where roads are partly barricaded to stop the entry of motor vehicles so that cyclists and pedestrians can have a free and safe experience.

In an event in April at Leisure Valley Grounds, some of the most powerful men in Gurgaon -- the Huda administrator, the municipal commissioner and the police commissioner – also took to the humble cycle.

The Non-Motorised Transport group organised a ‘Walk to Work’ campaign in association with NASSCOM, in Gurgaon, India. HT photo/Manoj Kumar