Cyclegiri group in Chandigarh organised ‘Rangoli’ competition ahead of Diwali with environmental messages.

Local community got involved to create bright-colored artworks with meaningful designs highlighting growing concerns of air pollution and road safety.

On Sunday 8th-Nov-2020, nearby residents of the plaza, sector-17 in Chandigarh rose to a vibrant and refreshing morning. A multi-colored community gathering revitalized the mood with engagement of all sorts intended to spread the message of urban cycling and clean festivities.

‘Cyclegiri’ a cycling group collaborated with Smart City Limited Chandigarh to conduct the Rangoli art competition. Citizens of various age groups and backgrounds participated in the event with great interest.

About 50 participants formed teams and co-created 25 Rangoli artworks using cycling as a core idea. The best designs were awarded by Mr. KK Yadav, Municipal Commissioner and CEO Smart City Limited Chandigarh in the presence of other delegates.

Commenting about this novel concept Mr. KK Yadav said “I was doubtful how a complex theme such as cycling be conveyed through Rangoli’s. But probably that’s the skill of an artist, they can convey anything and everything through art”.

Just like other places, events and social gatherings in the Chandigarh city had taken a back-seat due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. Cycling turned out to be an ice-breaker for many people, allowing them to safely move out in a larger surrounding.

As socio-economic activities have started to resume, members of Cyclegiri cycling club are spearheading the cause of active travel and engaging with the community through various on-ground and online campaigns.

Dr. Sunaina Bansal, a Gynecologist attached with the Cyclegiri group since 2017 said “Even before COVID-19, we had been doing a lot of activities to involve citizens into active lifestyle. With theme rides and focused discussions, we try to pitch the idea of smart commuting. Changing mindsets is a gradual process and people are welcoming our initiatives. We invite newbies to do fun rides with us, and overtime as they feel comfortable can start pedaling to work. The broad intent is to reduce car dependency and optimally utilize the existing cycle network available in the Chandigarh city”.

The Cyclegiri group collaborates with different organizations such as schools, colleges, technical institutes and business houses to introduce cycle to work schemes and theme rides within their set-up.

“To lead by example, periodic rides with formal clothing are organised to establish that cycling in office wear in Chandigarh city is a sure possibility” Sunaina added.

The concept of Rangoli competition struck an instant connect with the onlookers and public at large. Combining the traditional Indian art form of Rangoli with sports and climate issues is a brilliant idea.

Enjoy the photographs provided by Cyclegiri. Which Rangoli art you liked the most, leave a comment.

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Author: Vijay Malhotra, Mumbai


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