Altogether 117 cars participated,each with a differently-abled instructor guiding the driver with the help of Braille maps
They say the mind can see things that the eye cannot. On Sunday,the city realised this when it saw visually impaired people help car drivers navigate through the roads.
Surprising yet true,several visually impaired people took part in the 12th Annual Round Table Car Rally 2009,as navigators. The rally was organised by the ART 40,an NGO,in association with the Blind Peoples Association (BPA),Vastrapur.
The rally saw 117 cars participate,each having one visually impaired person guiding the driver. The visually impaired instructors used Braille script to guide the drivers on the route,which included 30 km in the city and 40 km outside the city areas including highways.
The car drivers who drove the vehicles as per the instructions of their blind guides were from different fields and had volunteered to join the rally.
Prakash Udeshi,the chairman of the ART40,said: We have surprisingly got a huge response this year. We used to flag off 50 to 60 cars every year,but this has been the best ever.
Chetan Joshi,who was guided by visually impaired Mukesh Solanki,emerged as the winner of the rally,followed by Vishal Chiripal with navigator Kanti Parmar and Vivek Kedia with navigator Vina Jasani. Pooja Agarwal with navigator Shikha Dubey won in the womens category.
Udeshi said big companies like Zydus Cadila,Vadilal,JCB,BMW dealerships,and Gallops motors participated in the event and some of them had joined voluntarily.
He said they received great response from people from the city and the state.
According to Daman Thakore,the convenor of the rally,the event was held to give the message to the society that disability was just a matter of dependency. In this rally an able person had to depend on a disabled for guidance. The event will remove inhibitions from peoples minds.