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Bengaluru’s Bicycle Mayor wants govt to encourage employees to use bicycles during lockdown

While cycling is encouraged, the Bicycle Mayor also thinks that the same would discourage those from keeping unwell to do so, keeping unhealthy people off roads. "This will play a role in reducing chances of infection," he told indianexpress.com.

Written by Ralph Alex Arakal | Bengaluru | Updated: April 20, 2020 6:49:25 pm
karnataka news, bengaluru coronavrus, covid-19 outbreak, bengaluru bicycle mayor, Sathya Sankaran, india lockdown, indian express ‘Relief Riders,’ a group comprising members of #CycleToWork initiative in Bengaluru has delivered over 138 sorties of essentials to senior citizens amid lockdown, in bicycles. (Express photo)

As post-lockdown measures are heavily discussed by the authorities and citizens across the country, Bengaluru’s ‘Bicycle Mayor’ Monday suggested companies should encourage the use of bicycles among employees once restrictions are eased.

In an open letter, Sathya Sankaran, the city’s Bicycle Mayor listed various reasons why cycling to work would be an effective option, especially now, in times of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Cycling, being an individual mode of transport, would ensure physical distance among people while decreasing chances of intermingling, Sankaran explained.

He added, “As pollution has reduced up to 70% during the lockdown, cycling to work will keep it to reduced levels thereby helping in increasing recovery rates (due to the pandemic).”

While cycling is encouraged, the Bicycle Mayor also thinks that the same would discourage those from keeping unwell to do so, keeping unhealthy people off roads. “This will play a role in reducing chances of infection,” he told indianexpress.com.

karnataka news, bengaluru coronavrus, covid-19 outbreak, bengaluru bicycle mayor, Sathya Sankaran, india lockdown, indian express Employees from over 270 companies working in Bengaluru have forwarded the requests to their concerned HRs/administrators. (Express Photo)

Further, the city’s Bicycle Mayor said that employees from over 270 companies working in Bengaluru have forwarded the requests to their concerned HRs/administrators.

“Through active members of the #CycleToWork initiative, we have also requested companies to turn a certain share of their car parking spaces to those for bicycle parking with distancing as a temporary measure,” Sankaran added.

Meanwhile, a group called ‘Relief Riders,’ which comprises members of #CycleToWork initiative, has been volunteering to deliver essentials to the elderly as the lockdown is in progress. “As many as 76 volunteers on bicycles delivered 138 sorties over 21 days across 50 wards in Bengaluru. The average distance each person has covered (both ways) is 7 km, saving 250 kg of carbon dioxide emission if the same was done using a motor vehicle,” a statement read.

Sankaran also shared his hopes that the government would mention about cyclists in the upcoming announcements related to relaxing lockdown measures. “It is high time the government realises the possibility of using bicycles just like any other vehicle and prioritising movement of people in bicycles during and after emergencies like COVID-19 will work out great,” he concluded.

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