Cycle Donation by Norbert Marks 8th Anniversary of MBC
Mangaluru: The Mangaluru Bicycle Club held its eighth Annual Day Celebrations at the Sahodaya Hall, Balmatta here, on May 5. The Chief Guest of the programme was Inspector General of Police (Western Range) Arun J Chakravarthy and the Guest of Honor was veteran cyclist Norbert D’Souza. Club President Dijayraj Nair, Vice-President Srikanth Raja, and other committee members along with several club members were present.
The programme began with an invocation. Welcoming the gathering Club President Dijayraj Nair said, “I take this opportunity to thank all of you for placing your trust in me to lead this organization for the next two years. I accept this position with great humility and I assure that I will act responsibly in taking the club to greater heights. We have strong and enthusiastic members who are encouraging us to take more steps in the sport of cycling. Without them, nothing is possible.”
After showcasing a short video comprising footage from various bicycle rides that the club had undertaken, Club Secretary Ganesh Nayak delivered the annual report of the past year’s activities. In his report, Ganesh said, “We started this journey in 2011 with 2 or 3 members. Today, our membership is well over 100 registered members. We have several activities that keep our members engaged such as Car Free Day, Critical Mass Ride, Vanamahotsava, Armed Forces Tribute Ride, Oil Conservation Drive, Photography Contests, and Joy Rides. We also have an event called the Tour de Mountain where we climb mountains such as the Shiradi Ghat, Kudremukh, Charmadi Ghat etc. Our vision for the Club is to have at least one cyclist per household by the year 2025.”
Next, veteran cyclist and Guest of Honour Norbert D’Souza donated his first road cycle – the American-made Trek 1.5 – to a young and upcoming cyclist Uday Gule. Norbert D’Souza has participated in several national-level races in the past. But, due to deteriorating health conditions, he decided to donate his bicycle as a gesture of kindness. The recipient of the Trek 1.5 – Uday Gule – is only 15 years old and hails from the city of Jamkhandi in Bagalkot District. He has beaten several state records and came in first at the Under-14 State-Level Bicycle Competition.
Later, the Chief Guest of the event – IGP (Western Range) Arun Chakravarthy delivered the keynote speech. Addressing the gathering Arun Chakravarthy said, “It is nice to meet all the members of the club without their bicycles and gear. Cycling takes me back to my childhood days. It is not something that you have to get used to. Cycling is a part of all of our childhood and it is an essential mode of transport. However, growing up takes away such small pleasures from us. In my application for the civil services exam, I had listed three hobbies – Cricket, Swimming and Cycling. Cricket used to rule our world but the sport of cycling was neglected in the early 90s.”
Arun further said, “When I was posted to Mangaluru, I wanted to keep myself physically engaged. That is why I restarted my hobby of cycling. However, I was hit by an age-related injury and my mobility was confined only to the office. Currently, I am working with the best physiotherapist in the city so that I can get back to cycling. Some of my memorable moments with the club are the rides we took to Suratkal Beach and Tannirbhavi Beach. We used to have good discussions en-route to the destination and such rides gave me a good opportunity to meet interesting people outside the department.”
Finally, the programme came to an end with several club members being awarded for the various events conducted over the past year. The 2017 and 2018 Photography contests were won by Ganesh Nayak. The winners of the 1000 km Ultra Spice Team Race – B Hariprasad, Masood, and Srikanth Raja were also recognized for their stupendous achievements along with several other members of the club.