AKBPC aims at bringing back the ‘cycle culture’ to Kozhikode
N.E. Balakrishna Marar’s is a success saga that owes much to a bicycle. It was a small travelling book stall on a bicycle that evolved into the famous Touring Book Stall, better known as TBS, in Kozhikode.
M.M. Sebastian has a history of spending 62 years on a bicycle, balancing an umbrella in one hand. Even at 78, he cycles an average 15 km every day. These two, who belong to two different strata of the society, met on Sunday when they were honoured by the All Kerala Bicycling Promotion Council (AKBPC).
The AKBPC organised a bicycle promotion rally in Kozhikode on Sunday, which was flagged off by Minister for Social Welfare and Panchayats M.K. Muneer.
Around 20 cyclists of various age groups took part in the rally that covered around 7 km around the city. The council aims to bring back the ‘cycle culture’ to Kozhikode by organising such promotional events and encouraging youngsters to use bicycles wherever possible.
Bicycles are perceived as a relief from the skyrocketing fuel price and traffic blocks caused by the considerable increase in vehicle density, besides solving a number of lifestyle health issues. The council has demanded that the State government cut the 5 per cent VAT levied on bicycles at present and make it more affordable to common man in order to promote its use. It has also demanded separate parking spaces for bicycles in public places.
Dr. Muneer, who flagged off the rally, said he had already given directions to local bodies to include a bicycle track on every new road. He said the Kozhikode beach, when developed again, would have a bicycle track from one end to the other, enabling tourists to enjoy the beach on a bicycle.
Chairman of the council C.E. Chakkunni, convenor of Calicut Cultural Museum Abhishek Sankar, Mayor A.K. Premajam, and convenor of the council Kris Sreekandath were present at the programme.