Sports and Wellbeing

The JNU Cycling Club Rides For a Good Cause: A Cycling Tour in Support of the Visually Impaired

Nine JNU cycling enthusiasts had quite an early start this Sunday, 7th of February: At 5.30am, a group of highly motivated cyclists gathered in the darkness, ready for action while the vast majority of the campus was still deeply asleep. Their aim was to take part in the “Tour de Vision…Miles for Lives”, a fundraising cycling event based in Gurgaon. Organized by the non-profit initiative Esha, the annual event is an endeavor to raise awareness about the importance of making public spaces accessible to everyone. By picking an outdoor activity like cycling, which is usually inaccessible to visually impaired persons, the focus lies on those that are commonly missing on two wheels. Professional and amateur cyclists were encouraged to conclude a 25 or 50km route, whilst organizations and individuals sponsored the cyclists financially for a successful participation. The raised funds will support the education of 1.000 visually challenged students by giving them access to Esha’s CLABIL (Central Library of Audio Books in Indian Language) project.

After successfully reaching Gurgaon and completing the route on the Gurgaon-Faridabad circuit, the JNU cyclists got rewarded with a heart-warming play performed by students of a blind school as well as by a performance of the ‘Cyclomaniacs’ – a Gurgaon based troupe of free-style BMX cyclists. With an uplifted mood despite their heavy legs, the cycling club returned to JNU campus with over 50km of total distance covered.

The JNU Cycling Club is not yet officially recognized as one of the sports clubs under the JNU sports office. However, for over a year now motivated cyclists meet approximately once a month to explore Delhi and surrounding on wheels. The motto in doing so is to discover unseen parts of the city by combining sports with cultural explorations. Through numerous tours, the cyclists already sought out some hidden treasures of the city – and simultaneously promote an environmentally friendly mode of transportation.

For more information about the “Tour de Vision”-event and the organization behind it, please check out their web presence at www.tourdevision.org and http://www.braillecards.org/about.htm.


Gundula Haage is pursuing her MA in the Global Studies Programme and works for The Informer. 

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