Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Cylcing practice at the St. Xavier's Jesuits house: PremalJyoti

A student inflating his cycle tyres on his own.
The cycle parking stand at the rear of the building

PremalJyoti, the front facade of the beautiful building by Architect Hasmukh Patel

It was an interesting discovery when, me and Katharine walked into this interesting piece of architecture as we were observing the cyclists in the university area.

We found out that all the 25 resident brothers, under scholistics training in the Jesuits house, are given cycles so that they can use cycle as the mode of commuting in the city. The cycles are then used and maintained by the brothers themselves. Their are 15 cycles at the moment and 25 brothers, so some of them share theire cycles.

Fr. Dinesh Braganza
When we went again to see the Father who looks after the cycle sharing every year, we met Fr. Dinesh Braganza, who gave us a very interesting insight into the practice of cycling in the house.

When he was student here, they used to have picnics on cycles and used to go for longer trips of 30-40 kms. He feels that now a "motor bike as a status" thing has made huge difference to the number of cyclists. "People now have a poor sense of self-esteem".
According to him, for a motorist driving a vehicle, the only aim while driving is reaching his destination as fast as possible, where as,
"a cyclist has a passion for the journey"
"Cycle says much more than just cycling"
Accoridng to him Ahmedabad is yet to wake up in green aspects. The amount of traffic has increased in last 10 years so much as that cyclists get pushed around on the roads. Its not easy cycling even around the university area, which once used to have quiter, cycle friendly raods.

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