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‘Green’ General cycles to work

A Lieutenant General in the Army rides a cycle to office and back twice a week. Not only does Commandant of the College of Military Engineering...

A Lieutenant General in the Army rides a cycle to office and back twice a week. Not only does Commandant of the College of Military Engineering (CME),Lt Gen U S P Sinha,cycle five kilometres from home to office on Wednesdays and Saturdays,but all other officers and students of the college have been doing the same for the last two years.

Recently,to stem increasing levels of pollution,the CME has also introduced battery-powered vehicles for those who visit the 3,500-acre campus. Curiously,a similar experiment started in 2008 by former Pune municipal commissioner Praveensinh Pardeshi for the civic staff floundered and died a premature death. Those at the PMC did not show any enthusiasm for the “no vehicle day” on Tuesdays.

The Global Environment Facility (GEF) of United Nations had approved a proposal for developing cycle tracks on roads connecting the Bus Rapid Transit System (BRTS) routes,however,cycling is yet to recapture the imagination of people in Pune.

The sight that greets visitors at the CME on Wednesdays and Saturdays is of scores of students and staff riding their bicycles. It’s only in case of medical emergencies or when jawans need to bring in ration from outside that the rule is relaxed.

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Sinha pedals from his Sapper house on the CME campus at around 8 am. “When I took over the command of the CME in 2007,I started cycling to set a personal example for the students and officers on the need to conserve the environment,” said Sinha.

Hailing from Madhubani district in Bihar,Sinha,said,“I feel everyone has a duty to protect the environment. Through cycling,I want to make students and officers,who will later command units,fall in love with nature. Each one of us has to take the lead. It is our duty towards the next generation to leave the environment in the state it has been handed to us.”

First published on: 13-04-2010 at 02:14:54 am
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