मंगलवार, 11 अगस्त 2015

Go for ride: Future of our cities, mother earth and humnity

For our future and for fewer deaths per year on road, we should reduce no. of vehicle and should move towards moving as many people as possible in as less time we could do and the best solution is of course, use of cycles.
I am trying to compare 3 mode of private commutations here. Cycle/ motorbike/ car?

Why will people choose a particular mode of commutation?
These criterias are-
1. It should save time
2. It should be safe
3. It should be comfortable

And India has the 4th criteria:
4. Mode of commutation is attached to status of a person.

As far as first point is concerned, for small to medium distances, and considering the increasing traffic on our roads, cycle may take almost as much time as a car and motorbike definitely takes less time than a car. (I go to my office on my scooter and it always takes less time to reach office/home using my scooter compared to what it took on some the days in which I go with my office colleagues using car)

Safety is a big issue and it is the only one which ranks cars above bike/motorbike. Cycle lanes are must and I don't know how long it will take our policymakers to decide that it is more beneficial to convert 2 lanes of roads to cycle lanes than allowing cars/motor vehicle on all 4 lanes.

For the third one, it is very very much comfortable if one starts his bike/motorbike inside his house and reaches office on time, when many are stranded in their cars in our own Indian traffic. Best thing about cycle is that it keeps moving. We have to take in our mind the harsh summer which most of the India faces and which makes cycling a bit difficult than driving. Then also we may wish to move with motorbikes and not cars. Or on a very harsh weather condition, take an umbrella, walk and use public transport. By using cars don’t make it harsher for others.

And on the last one; Aaahh. I have felt personally that our society attaches one personality with the length of his car. And a person riding cycle is one who has to be poor enough for not to afford at least a motorbike. We have reached such a level that when I visited one government office in Allahabad, I found out that the parking area nearest to office premises is reserved for cars (with a warning that any cycle/motorbike found standing in that area will be fined). This is a classical example of our mindset. We are doing exactly the opposite what we should do.
But it has to be changed. And this change will have to be us, all of us. All of us who are working in s/w firms, government offices etc have to break this stereotype. Many of us now (especially after qualifying civil service examination) think that what the others would think if they saw us going market with our cycles than cars. But why to care for them? Also with the increasing lifestyle related diseases it would help in keeping your blood pressure and sugar level under control. There is no point in using car to go to a gym and then start running there on treadmill.

I have now decided that I would use cycle as much as possible for short distances (< 5 kms) and public transport/scooter for distances more than that. And use of car would be limited to only when it is actually required.

Think about it once. Who wants our future generation to going on road with oxygen cylinders on their back? I know that none of you want such a future. To change that, start from today.