Seven women riders are on a road trip of the golden quadrilateral, halt at Noida | noida | Hindustan Times
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Seven women riders are on a road trip of the golden quadrilateral, halt at Noida

Ladies of Harley, an all-women Harley Davidson chapter, has embarked on its first ride across the golden quadrilateral, the fifth longest highway in the world. The ride started from Daman on April 8.

noida Updated: Apr 11, 2018 15:00 IST
The women come from diverse backgrounds. The group comprises architects, IT professionals and homemakers.
The women come from diverse backgrounds. The group comprises architects, IT professionals and homemakers. (Sunil Ghosh/HT Photo)

Covering 6,000 kilometres of the golden quadrilateral, spread across 12 cities, in 14 days on seven superbikes is the aim of a group of seven women bikers, who are on a journey to prove that India is safe for women to travel alone.

Ladies of Harley, an all-women Harley Davidson chapter, has embarked on its first ride across the golden quadrilateral, the fifth longest highway in the world. The ride started from Daman on April 8.

The riders said they are motivated to break stereotypes. Forty-three-year-old Sunita Kunjeer, the director of the group, says it is a proud moment.

“The women in our group break stereotypes every day by riding superbikes. We want to prove that contrary to the popular notion that Indian roads are unsafe, women can feel free to embark on a journey. We want to show that there is more to Indian roads than potholes,” said Kunjeer.

She said, “We want to emphasise the serenity and beauty of the highways here. I proposed this ride and the ladies jumped at the opportunity. Ten of my fellow riders volunteered for the ride but only seven of us could do it,” she said.

The women come from diverse backgrounds. The group comprises architects, IT professionals and homemakers.

“We come from different states. We belong to different age brackets. We have different professions. However, what we have in common is a passion for riding bikes. Motorcycling has brought us together. We have found a new family within this fraternity,” Kunjeer, a homemaker, who is based in Pune, said.

She said her husband and children are supportive of her initiative. “Such endeavours cannot be possible without family support. I know I speak for all the women when I say that we are lucky to have families that are not only supportive but also appreciative of what we do,” she said.

The youngest one in the group also happens to be the one with the highest mileage in her kitty. “I will complete 110,000 kilometres with this ride,” beamed 23-year-old Anushriya Gulati.

Gulati is the first woman rider in India to have taken her motorcycle to the Khardungla pass, the highest motorable road in the country.

She also feels proud to be running an initiative to save the girl child.

“As a woman, this is an issue I can relate to. I have been working on this for almost as long as I have been riding. I travel alone across different states and interact with people highlighting the issue. It feels nice to be doing this,” she said.

Most of the riders have a social message to pass.

The seniormost member of the group, 48-year-old Shirley George, said, “I do a lot of cancer awareness programmes. That is a subject that is close to my heart. Most of our local rides focus on issues such as safe driving.”

George is an architect and is the first certified woman contractor in Karnataka.

“People tend to look at women riders and think they are a different type of people but, we are not. I work, I ride, I go home, cook, wash clothes and do chores just like anyone. I feel that it is all about priorities. I do things I love and I make time for them. Just because I am doing something unique doesn’t mean I shirk from my responsibilities,” George, who has been riding for almost 33 years now, said.

“In no universe will a 23-year-old girl hang out with a 50-year-old woman but that is what we are doing on this journey,” said George.

Kunjeer said, “We are lucky to be doing this. It’s not an easy initiative but, if seven women can make this journey with no outside help, then anyone can do it. Indian infrastructure in terms of highways is women-friendly and we encourage more women to embark on such journeys.”

The group will ride to Kanpur from Delhi and will end their journey in Daman on April 21.