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Kanishka Poddar :: The new Bicycle Mayor for Ranchi.

Ranchi, Jharkhand | November | 14, 2019 :: Kanishka Poddar joins international network of change makers, to accelerate cycling adoption. Ranchi now has a Bicycle Mayor to accelerate the city’s approach to cycling. Kanishka Poddar joins an influential network of independent city leaders that is now active on every continent, all working to make their cities more human-centric and fit for the future.

The task of Kanishka Poddar as Bicycle Mayor will be to work across all parts of the community to identify the most pressing issues, and then bring people together to work on implementing practical solutions. Passionate about cycling and creating a more livable city, he takes up the voluntary role beside his work at Mulberry Lifestyle.

The Bicycle Mayor network was established and is coordinated by the Dutch social enterprise BYCS, which works to create and scale breakthrough new solutions for cycling. It has a mission called 50by30, which means they want 50% of all city trips to be taken on bike by 2030. They have this mission because cycling does not just provide active, clean mobility solutions for cities but it also improves public mental and physical health, improves the environment, builds stronger communities and fosters new, sustainable economic opportunities.

Every Bicycle Mayor in the network works towards this mission according to local needs but with the shared experience of the other Bicycle Mayors. And being part of the network also elevates each person’s profile, ensuring they can be more effective in their work. The focus areas for their work can be very varied. In Cape Town, the Bicycle Mayor has been educating young women to ride, allowing them to access education and employment for the first time. In India, the Bicycle Mayors are all actively tackling the air pollution crisis in their cities, whilst in Amsterdam, there is a focus on improving safety for children.

Kanishka Poddar said that the initial focus for the work in Ranchi will be to educate people at large about benefits of commuting on bicycle, ensuring ample parking facilities for bicycle across the city and to make the roads of Ranchi safer for cyclists. He said: “I am really pleased to be named as Bicycle Mayor of Ranchi. This instantly brings Ranchi on the global map of cycling cities of the world. It will help us connect with the best minds of the world and take appropriate steps in making our city more and more cycling friendly. The presence of local Bicycle Mayor of Ranchi will help great deal in focused work towards development of cycling culture in the city. Ranchi has grown multifold in last 2 decades which has resulted in chaotic traffic situation and high pollution across the city. The only way people can declutter the roads and environment is by switching over to more sustainable mode of transportation with bicycle being one of them. Even the launch of Bike Sharing Facility in city is a big step towards attaining the common goal of making Ranchi cleaner and livable.

As a Bicycle Moyor of Ranchi, I will ensure regular cycling events are organized with the sole motto of inspiring people to take-up cycling as a prime mode of commuting. I will also be working in close collaboration of local government and authorities to ensure parking facilities are available across the city and people are educated to make city roads safer for cyclists. I aim to work towards creating sustainable cycling friendly infrastructure in the city, in making the roads safer and educating people at large to take up cycling.

Maud de Vries, co-founder of BYCS, said: “We need to ensure our cities are more liveable and ready for the challenges of the future. But the changes required are not happening fast enough. We know that the bicycle is key to transforming this, and we know that every city can benefit from having a Bicycle Mayor to unlock this potential. We are thrilled to welcome Kanishka Poddar to the international Bicycle Mayor network and excited to see what happens next in Ranchi.”

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