Manish Jhatakia

I am a businessman in my town operating a printing offset and I have three wonderful children with my wife. Based on the current sedentary lifestyle and general lethargic attitude prevalent, I decided that I do not want to fall victim to issues associated with lack of exercise and an unhealthy lifestyle. I wanted to pick up an activity which does not restrict my workout pattern and enables me to exercise based on my convenience, thus I chose cycling as a form of exercise. Looking at the advantages and positive changes cycling has brought in my life, I wish to spread the benefits of cycling to society at large and change my town into a fit, healthy and environmentally friendly atmosphere.

How would you describe your mission?

My mission is to raise awareness about cycling to people of all age groups and provide improved framework facilities to all cyclists in town.

What are the obstacles and challenges you’re facing in your city?

The biggest obstacle is to change the mindset of people, that in order to stay fit it is essential to join a gym to workout, provide better infrastructure to the cyclists and remove the status symbol from people’s minds that it is better to drive a car than to ride a bicycle.

What are your next steps now that you are the Bicycle Mayor?

As they say, every drop in the ocean matters, likewise, I wish to achieve my mission by undertaking the following steps:
✓ Develop rental and sharing cycle system in town along with improving infrastructure for cycling on the road
✓ Organize events, programs in various organizations to raise awareness about cycling and increase members in Gondal Cycling Club
✓ Generate funds to distribute cycles to the people in need

What can other cities learn from your city?

One of the biggest lessons that my town can teach others is with harmony and teamwork, we can all achieve our goals in a better and efficient manner. When I founded the Gondal Cycling Club, there were very few members who were a part of the group, but the strength increased gradually since each member took efforts to bring their family and friends in the club and encouraged them to ride a bicycle. There are various people who are still not a part of the club, but they have started cycling to exercise and make it their means of transportation. Thus, one person alone cannot achieve any goals without the upliftment and support from other people.