Meet Odisha’s Original ‘Mo Cycle’ Man

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25 March 2019

Snigdha Chandan Das

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Bhubaneswar: Climate Change is real. It is urgent and it is happening now. Many world leaders have already realized that the future generations might not get to live in the same Earth as we do. We might be the last generation with a real opportunity to save this World but only a few are acting upon it. One such aware citizen is Rudra Samantaray of Bhubaneswar. Before Odisha Government’s public sharing cycling initiative ‘MO Cycle’ with Capital Regional Urban Transport (CRUT), this man had single-handedly started the revolution of promoting the cycling culture in the capital city.

Samantaray said, “The story goes back to 3 years ago, before the start of Raahagiri- the weekly street cultural extravaganza on Janpath. In a tie-up with Indian Oil, we got 30 cycles that were kept in six petrol pumps across Bhubaneswar. People had to submit their original ID cards to us and they could rent a cycle free-of-charge for use.” Soon, people started using the cycles for exercise while some used it to complete their daily chores. In this way, as many as 60 people used to take the bikes every day which means that each cycle was going through two sets of hands per day.

This initiative named ‘Parikrama’ took flight when Samantaray’s organization ‘JAI ODISHA’ partnered with BDA-BMC for Raahagiri. This gave cycling culture more exposure and people started opting for this less-fuel, less-traffic option more and more. “I admit that my business has suffered a little after the start of MO Cycle in Bhubaneswar, but I thank the Government from the bottom of my heart for boosting this alternative mode of transport. Parikrama cycles might be used less now but at least the culture is growing and a healthy habit is developing,” Samantaray explained.

That is not all as Jai Odisha also has a ‘Vastra’ initiative in which people donate their old clothes that are washed, ironed and then re-distributed with dignity. A small shop has been set up by the NGO and every month underprivileged persons throng the shop to take one outfit for free. In this way, Jai Odisha has recycled around 35,000 used clothes and has spread happiness in several slums.

“We have also started the Swachh Samman initiative in which volunteers of the organization visit the statues of legends and freedom fighters across Bhubaneswar and wash them with care. After giving the statues a good wash, they are decorated with fresh flowers and paid tributes,” he explained.

As many as 5000 people are associated with ‘Jai Odisha’ directly or indirectly. These include the donors, the workers, the ideators and the propagators. The organization also looks forward to eradicate issues of health and education in all slums of capital city. The volunteers are also engaged in a war-footing to help senior citizens and get them engaged in community programs.

With several such pro-people activities, Samantaray has embarked on a journey to change the world and make the society a better place to live in.

Also Read: Modi To Address Election Rallies In Jeypore And Bhawanipatna

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Rudra Samantaray

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