Pune: Kashmir To Kanyakumari Cycle Ride For Drug Free India

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Pune, 20th September 2023: Nothing is impossible if you have enthusiasm, passion and an indomitable will to make a difference in the world. Sandeep Bhapkar, National Coach of Rowing from MIT University of Art Design and Technology, has proved it by doing the same. Sandeep, along with the student Saikonda, has given the message of ‘Nashmukta Bharat’ while completing the journey from Kashmir to Kanyakumari, the longest route in Asia. Along with this, they have managed to complete this challenging distance of 3700 km in just 14 days.

On the journey which started on 19th from the famous Lal Chowk in Kashmir, passing through 10 states, 1 union territory and challenges like Cycle punctures, various checkpoints of the army in Kashmir, sunburn due to heat, Sandeep and Saikonda hoisted the flag of India at Kanyakumari on 8 September. Both of them have tried to convince that cycling addiction is better for physical health than the addiction of tobacco, alcohol, cigarettes through this cycle ride. After this performance, Vice-Chancellor and Working President of the University Prof. Dr. Mangesh Karad, Prof. Dr. Sunita Karad, Prof. Vice-Chancellor Dr. Anant Chakradev, Registrar Dr. Mahesh Chopde, Dr. Suresh Bhuyar, Prof. Padmakar Phad have praised both of them.

Sandeep Bhapkar is the coach of rowing in the university. In this sport, the strength of hands and feet is needed. To increase endurance Sandeep started cycling. It started by visiting local places like Jejri, Sinhagad, Wari of Pandharpur and then Goa. Later he also covered a distance of 1600 km from Pune to Kanyakumari. Now it was time for the longest route in Asia from Kashmir to Kanyakumari!
Finally the plan was decided, according to which both of them packed their bicycles in boxes and left Pune by Jhelum Express on the independence Day. Starting their journey from Lal Chowk and cycling for 200 to 220 km every day, along with the changing regions, seeing the changing People, their language, food, lifestyle, Cultures, historical Panipath, Red Fort of Agra, both of them reached the end of India in Kanyakumari in record time.

Bicycle is our addiction
While passing through Madhya Pradesh, a man with his mouth full of tobacco asked, ‘Why a bicycle when there are modern tools, and for what?’ for which Sandip replied ‘Like you are addicted to tobacco, cycling is our addiction. The only difference is that you are shortening your life while we are increasing ours.’

“This journey was enriching with many experiences. In which there was a wonderful vision of India full of diversity. Through this we have tried to convey the message of drug free bharat. All this journey would not have been possible without the mental and financial support provided by MIT ADT University. After this we aim to travel the outline of Indian map.”
– Sandeep Bhapkar, National Rowing Coach.


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