Bhubaneswar : The ‘Cycles4Change’ campaign in Bhubaneswar got off to a roaring start as a cyclothon organized as part of the programme by the Bhubaneswar Smart City Limited (BSCL) in collaboration with the Bhubaneswar Municipal Corporation (BMC) has received an overwhelming response as people from different age groups and all walks of life took part in the event, which was conducted with an aim to promote cycling and create awareness about fitness and good health.
The cyclothon which saw participation of over 500 people, including many professional and amateurish cyclists, started from Ekamra Plaza and culminated at Dhauli Shanti Stupa covering a distance of around 12 kms. All registered participants were given T-shirts and caps before start of the rally.
Named as ‘Cyclegiri’, the cycle rally was flagged off by Shri Prem Chandra Chaudhary, BMC Commissioner-cum-Chief Executive Officer, Bhubaneswar Smart City Ltd today morning at Ekamra Plaza near Sisubhavan Square urging every participant to embrace cycling as a mode of transport in their daily life and give respect to cyclists. All participants and officials took a pledge to promote cycling in the city in the coming days.
“The response has been great for today’s event and we are requesting everyone to take to cycling as a mode of transport to popularize the cycling culture in Bhubaneswar. This will help in saving environment, gaining good health and easing traffic in the city,” said Shri Chaudhary.
He further said that people should voluntarily make Friday in every week as Cycle Day by commuting on cycle be it to their workplace or for rejuvenation purposes.
Besides, the Commissioner also informed that car, truck and bus drivers coming to appear in driving license test will take a pledge on how to let a cyclist feel safe on road. “We are trying and working on some aspects to ensure that the cyclists get respect and acknowledgement from society”.
During the event, Shri Chaudhary has launched an official website www.cyclegiribbsr.com through which cyclists and public can get complete information about upcoming events and can give their suggestions and feedbacks. Besides, people can register themselves for upcoming cycle rallies, give artistic concepts and ideas related to cycling and can donate cycles to people who need it.
This apart, an anthem for the cyclothon was also released which received a thunderous applause from the participants and public alike. The three-minute forty seconds Odia song has been sung by Sabisesh Mishra and Diptirekha Padhi. The music is composed by Prem Anand and lyrics penned by Basant Raj Samal.
The event, meant to promote cycling, saw people of different age groups taking part with great enthusiasm. “This is a great step to create awareness about cycling as a mode of transport and save our environment. Why do we have to depend on a bike or car for short distances? Why not considering taking cycling again as it is a great way to stay physically fit and healthy. I thoroughly enjoyed the cyclothon organized by the Bhubaneswar Smart City Limited,” said Shri Ashish Mittal, who works as a Human Resources Chief with a private school and a professional cyclist participated in over 15 cyclothons in different cities of India.
COVID Sachetaks-Peer Leaders Honoured:
Honouring efforts and dedication of Peer Leaders of BSCL’s Socially Smart Project who are working as COVID Sachetaks in various slums and communities in the fight against COVID-19, Shri Chaudhary has donated 25 bicycles to 25 Peer Leaders. “Our COVID Sachetaks are frontline workers and have been doing a great job in creating awareness and helping distressed people in different slums and non-slum areas in Bhubaneswar. As they are very young, they should inculcate the habit of cycling which will eventually help them living a healthy and active life,” he added.
Among the Peer Leaders who received bicycles are Ananda Pradhan (20), Tofan Jena (21), Subhojit Das (20), Pushpanjali Rana (20) and Shradhanjali Panda (21) from OUAT Farm Gate. Sony Behera (15), Priyanaka Priyadarshini Sahu (18) and K. Mohini (17) from Telgu Basti. Anita Nayak (17) and Budhia Dakua (17) from Bayababa Basti and Pathara Bandha Tarini Basti.
Similarly, Dipanjali Swain (20), Pragnya Paramita Sahoo (20), Prativa Dalai (18) and Laxmipriya Swain (18) from Press Colony and Biswa Ranjan Sahoo (19) from Budheswari Colony. Chitaranjan Mandal (19), Sagar Nayak (14) from Ganganagar. Umakanata Behera (20) and Arati Reddy (17) from Santi Nagar slum, P. Padma (17), Mamali Sahoo (18) from Jharana Sahi slum, Aparna Das (20), Subhalaxmi Prusty (17) from Panitanki and Kalyani Singh (22) and Sumitra Das (20) from Harekrushna Nagar.
Along with 95 other cities, Bhubaneswar is taking part in the India Cycles4change challenge, which will run in two stages. In October, 11 cities will be shortlisted and will receive Rs 1 crore award and guidance from national and international experts to further scale up the initiatives in stage two, which will be held until May 2021.
Among other officials who were present at the event are Shri Kamaljit Das, General Manager (Administration), BSCL and Nodal Officer of the programme ‘Cycles4Challenge’, Smt Diptirani Sahoo, General Manager (Special Projects), BSCL, Shri Prafulla Kumar Swain, ADM, Bhubaneswar, Shri Surath Chandra Mallick, Additional Commissioner, Shri Abani Knata Patnaik, Additional Commissioner, BMC.