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This blog post originally appeared in TheCityFix.
In too many cities today we see a stark dichotomy. On one side we have enclaves for the rich and powerful, full of luxuries and amenities, and access to the bounties of a globalized world. On the other, there are the disempowered and poor, slumdwellers, and recent migrants, who lack even the most basic services.
Globally, and in India, the COVID-19 pandemic has temporarily interrupted the strong growth of the electric vehicles market. In the coming days, it will be important to regain this momentum in order to advance the decarbonization of transport.
The impossible has already happened and slowly, it is becoming the new normal. With cases of COVID-19 reaching 4 million mark in India, cities continue averting public transport and big investment project like metros and monorails. Also, public spaces are closed to citizens and recreational activities are becoming prey to social distancing norms, affecting a common urban commuter. Amid this all, there is one ray of hope. The pandemic has resurrected cycling. With social distancing becoming the new norm, cycling seems to be the one stop mobility solution for all commute troubles.
Article 21-A of the Constitution of India guarantees the right to elementary education for all children. But accessing this basic right comes at a cost for many children, who risk their lives daily as they travel to school. Road traffic injuries are the leading cause of injury-related deaths among children up to the age of 18 in India.
Cycling is thriving, both as a mode of transport and as a way of staying healthy during the COVID-19 crisis.
On Sunday, India’s latest bicycle sharing system was launched in New Delhi following on from the successes of Mysore, Bhopal, and other Indian cities, which have helped garner interest in cycling as an alternative mode of commute. The bike share system was launched by Venkaiah Naidu, Vice President of India, Dr. Harsh Vardhan, Minister of Environment, Forests, and Climate Change, and Meenakshi Lekhi, Member of Parliament, New Delhi.