GUWAHATI, Oct 4 - To reap the benefits of cycling like reduced pollution and congestion in Guwahati, the need of the hour is to promote cycling as a mode of transport. Keeping it in view, the Bicycle Mayor of Guwahati with the support of Pedal for a Change, a social enterprise, is building an active citizens� group called the Bicycle Councillors of Guwahati, which will work together to make cycling a safe, accessible and aspirational mode of transport among all sections of society.
It is an internationally recognised programme endorsed by BYCS (pronounced as bikes) � the Amsterdam-based social enterprise which appoints Bicycle Mayors in cities across the world. �Guwahati has seen a tremendous increase in the number of people who have started cycling. This was primarily driven by the COVID-19 pandemic and the resultant lockdown. An active lifestyle needs to be encouraged so that people take up cycling,� said Arshel Akhtar, Bicycle Mayor of Guwahati and co-founder of Pedal for a Change.
�To make this possible, we need to impress upon the government to create cycling infrastructure across the city, encourage more people to take up cycling, spread awareness among other motor vehicle users to respect cyclists, educate cyclists to respect traffic rules and much more,� he added.
The main objective of the programme is to develop a team of change-makers who can take up leadership roles in their locality to promote cycling among all sections of society.
Any resident of Guwahati between 18 to 65 years of age can join the team as a Bicycle Councillor representing their ward. Thirty-one Bicycle Councillors will be selected by a panel of conscientious citizens of Guwahati. The position of Bicycle Councillor is honorary, voluntary, non-political and temporary in nature.
Guwahati will be the third city in India to have Bicycle Councillors after Bengaluru and Mumbai. People who want to work together with the Bicycle Mayor of Guwahati and the Pedal for a Change to make ground-level changes can join the programme.
The last date for submission of application is October 10. Interested persons can apply through the link: https://www.pedalforachange.org/bicycle-councillors-of-guwahati.