To: Shri Siddhartha Bhattacharya, Honourable Minister - Guwahati Development Department
- Endorse cycling as a mode of transport by releasing an advisory encouraging people to use cycles to travel for their work in the city for short distances or whenever possible.
Adopt a comprehensive NMT/Cycling policy or strategy for the city with an aim to improve the modal share of cycling to 50% by 2030.
Create good quality, safe cycling infrastructure connecting the educational institutes, government offices, commercial places and all places of public interest.
Invest at least 50% of the city’s transportation budget towards building high-quality walking and cycling infrastructure in the city.
Why is this important?
The COVID-19 pandemic has resulted in more and more people trying to avoid public transportation for fear of contracting the virus and like in other parts of the world, India experienced a boom in bicycle sales during the coronavirus pandemic.
Although most Indian cities are not bicycle-friendly, there has been a sharp increase in recreational cycling during the pandemic as people try to beat cabin fever during lock-downs, get exercise, or avoid commutes on stuffed public transport.
People now feel the need for private transport more than ever. And a major section can still not afford cars, so cycling presents an opportunity like no other.
The Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs said the pandemic has presented an opportunity to make cities more accessible to pedestrians and cyclists.
In a June advisory last year, it recommended pedestrianization of at least three markets in every city and more bicycle lanes.
Given, there is a push for cycling at a national level. Let us demand our local civil administration like Municipal Corporation, Guwahati Metropolitan Development Corporation to take some steps in the right direction.
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Thanks for all that you do,
The Jhatkaa.org team.