NET News Desk
Guwahati city, along with the rest of the world, has seen a tremendous growth of cycling enthusiasts in the last couple of months during the COVID-19 pandemic. Bicycle shops around the city as well as all over the state have reported a huge increase in sales. Many people have started cycling as a way to keep fit or to explore nearby areas. Many people who had not cycled in a while took out their old cycles and started cycling again. Many small cycling groups have sprung up all over the city. It is expected that many of these people will keep cycling even after the pandemic is over.
This gives an opportunity to initiate measures to promote cycling as cycling gives people an equitable, clean and inexpensive option to travel for their work by maintaining social distance and develop their immunity. While at the same time they do not contribute to pollution and congestion in our city street. Cities also become safer as lesser accidents take place
Keeping this in view an online petition has been started to get support and signature of people from all over Guwahati. The petition is addressed to the Guwahati Development Department Minister Siddhartha Bhattacharya seeking some short term steps and prepare a long term vision to make Guwahati cycling friendly. Interested people can click on the link below to read the demands and support the petition. https://act.airalert.in/petitions/let-s-make-guwahati-the-most-cycling-friendly-city-in-india .
Similar petitions have been started in about 10 cities across India. The petition seeks that our cities need to promote sustainable and active modes of transport like cycling and walking (also called Non-Motorised Transport).
The petition not just seeks cycling lanes in some parts of the city but to prepare a long term comprehensive plan that encompasses Governance and Policy measures, Planning, Design and Implementation measures and also the allocation of Finances for such facilities. These measures, when implemented, will go a long way in making Guwahati the most cycling-friendly city in India.
The petition has been started by the Bicycle Mayor of Guwahati, Arshel Akhter, with the support of Pedal for a Change and The Green lane Foundation