Noida: Fitness enthusiasts cycle for 75km to mark 75th Independence Day
A group of more than 25 fitness enthusiasts from different high-rises of the city marked the 75th Independence Day by cycling for 75km on Sunday. The cyclists said that their aim was to bring awareness among the denizens about a healthy lifestyle.
The ride started at 4.30am from Manav Rachana School in Sector 51 and ended at 9am at Meghdutam Park in Sector 50, via the City Centre , Mahamaya Flyover, Pari Chowk, and Metro Depot in Greater Noida. The Noida Federation of Apartment Owners Associations (NOFAA), a residential body, organised the event named NOFAATHON.
The cyclists said that while the ride to commemorate the Independence Day was thrilling, the “cycling in the city is not easy, especially due to the poor conditions of various roads”. They pointed out the lack of proper cycling tracks and safety of riders in the city.
“More than 25 residents from over 10 high-rise societies participated in the event covering a distance of 75km to celebrate the 75th Independence Day. The participants expressed concerns over several potholes and broken roads on the route. Such conditions discourage other residents to come forward and participate in such a recreational event. We urge the authorities to help make the city roads more cycle friendly and improve the already existing cycling tracks,” said Rajiva Singh, president of NOFAA.
According to the official figures, the city has 17 different cycling tracks of total length 62.52km across 10 work circles (barring work circles 6 and 7). The longest track is of 12.30km along sectors 145, 146, 147, 154 and 161, while the shortest is 300 metres near Mahamaya Balika Inter College in Sector 44.
However, the cyclists said that none of the tracks are in proper condition. “Most of the cycling tracks have eroded or are encroached upon. They are full of potholes, or are used by commuters to evade signals,” said Singh.
Ashmita Arora, a resident of Sector 75 who participated in the event, said that Noida has some beautiful green patches but riding a cycle along them is a dangerous affair. “We have to be extra cautious as there are so many potholes and rough patches. Also, since all roads are not properly illuminated, we were dependent on our cycle lights since it’s early morning. Such experiences discourage many cyclists from plying on roads. Our today’s ride was aimed at raising such issues, including potholes and dark stretches,” said Arora.
Officials of the Noida authority said that they are working on improving the condition of roads in the city. “We are already working on making the roads pothole-free. We have fixed over a thousand potholes in the past week,” said an official, requesting anonymity.
Meanwhile, two other groups -- Noida Express Cyclists (NEC) and Noida Express Walkers ( NEW) -- on Sunday concluded a 300km week-long cycling and 75km week-long walking challenge, respectively, and also held a separate 75km cycle ride marking the 75th Independence Day.
“The week-long challenges and the 75km one-day cycle ride were held to promote a healthy living. A number of group members participated in the challenge and resolved to maintain a healthy living,” said Dr DK Gupta, who is the member of the NEC and NEW groups.