As tourism opens up, a woman undertakes a car journey across India to encourage people to return to travel

Mitra Satheesh, a 40-year-old mother of two, is on Oru Desi Drive, a car journey across India.

March 18, 2021 03:40 pm | Updated March 20, 2021 08:45 am IST

“After seeing the disastrous impact of the pandemic on the tourism industry, I felt that as a responsible traveller, I must travel to encourage confidence among fellow travellers and people at large,” says Mira Satheesh, Assistant Professor at the Government Ayurveda College, Tripunithura in Kochi who is on, Oru Desi Drive, a car journey across India

Mitra, a 40-year-old mother of two, is accompanied by her 11-year-old son Narayan. She set off on the adventure on March 17 in her Maruti S Cross.

Since 2019, Mitra has undertaken solo trips to Bhutan, Nagaland, Manipur and Punjab.

After travel restrictions imposed due to the lockdown were lifted, she drove to Hampi in September 2020, followed by a trip to the Nilgiris in November and a nine-day tour of Karnataka in December.

Mitra’s travels are not just about sightseeing. She loves to explore rare historical monuments, cultures and crafts.

Some of the pit stops on her current journey include researching mat weaving in Pattamadai, a village in the Tirunelveli district of Tamil Nadu; the forgotten Cheriyal scroll paintings of Hyderabad in Telangana; exploring the tribal villages of Bastar, Koraput, and Jhabua in Madhya Pradesh; an Aryan village in Leh; terracotta temples of Bishnupur and terracotta mosques of Malda in West Bengal; and meeting the Rabha-Bodo tribals of Assam.

As a health worker, she worked at the Corona Frontline Treatment Centres (CFLTC) and has received the COVID-19 vaccinations.

“Travel is safe if the health protocols are followed,” she says, encouraging women to discover their strengths through travel.

Incredible India has offered support to her unique venture and her biggest cheerleaders are her fellow travellers with whom she will be connected as she gets on the road again.

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