Pedestrians reclaim streets on Raahgiri Day

Every Sunday from 6 to 10 AM, the inner circle of  Connaugt Place is reserved only for pedestrians. Putting aside their usual habit of waking up for brunch on Sunday, Delhiites pour is by 6:00 AM on Sundays at Connaught Place. One parent said that her children were so excited about the event that they hardly slept at night. And they reached the venue before 6:00 AM. “I wish that they  had the same enthusiasm to wake up on week days to go to school.” She says. Watch the video ‘Glimpses of Raahgiri” here.

On Raahgiri day streets are  car-free for few hours for pedestrians to enjoy street activities that they miss due to  heavy road traffic and lack of availability of space.  The first Raahgiri Day was on Novermebr 18th , 2013, in Gurgaon,  a Sunday, with around 10000 participants.

Zumba Dancing at Raahgiri Day
Zumba Dancing

The Sundays after that have become time for celebrating street activities in Gurgaon. The number of participants is increasing manifold week after week. In Delhi the first raahgiri Day on July 13th was attended by a crowd of 5000. Meenakshi Lekhi, MP New Delhi Lok Sabha, lead the cycling rally.

Running Race at Raahgiri Day
Running Race

Kids arrive with skating kit. As one mother said “At school they have limited space and time to skate. Here they have four hours and as they skate in a circle they can skate without fear of hitting someone. ”

Raahgiri has altered the lifestyle of Delhites, they have changed from night owls to morning larks. Despite the huge crowd at the venue, there is peace and no cramming for space. The chirping of birds is audible as the noise pollutants are at standstill for few hours and fresh morning air can be inhaled.

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There is nothing like cycling at leisure – hands free from the handle, some times without pedaling, whistling an old Kishore Kumar song, holding the baby on shoulder and riding the cycle. There are many more such cycling fun seen only on Raahgiri Day. “I’m cycling after 20 years” said a 45 year old man with lot of excitement. It was a pleasure to watch girls riding cycles without fear, very few girls ride two-wheeler, let alone cycle now a days in Delhi.

Raahgiri Day is attracting huge crowd as there is something for everyone of all age groups.  Babies as young as 6  month old and eighty year old elderly can be seen enjoying all the activities. In the Drum Jamming Session the young, the middle aged, the elderly, the men, the women, the professionals, the amateurs and the on-lookers were all creating music and dancing to the music. The other activities include yoga, zumba dancing, gym work outs, ……….. In a counter of traffic police, questionnaires for kids were distributed to spread awareness about road safety.

 Why you should go for Raahgiri this Sunday?

  • The venue is easily reachable by metro, bus or car.
  • Apart from the conveyance you do not have to pay for anything else.
  • Cycles are rented free for from Times of India corner after depositing mobile phone as security (NB: cheap phones are not accepted).
  • You can reach home in time for the routine Sunday brunch.
  • Every sunday there is something new and exciting
  • The Raahgiri Day excitement is just catching up, so better make the best use before the event gets more crowded

Raahgiri day is in its salad days, now the crowd consist of people who were craving for the space, time and clean environment.  But in the coming days Raahgiri will alter the lifestyle of majority of Delhiites for sure. This week there was a Raahgiri in Dwarka, Authorities are planning Rahagiri Day at more venues in Delhi.

Enjoy Raahgiri Day coming Sunday, breath some fresh air, take football and cricket equipment and play without fearing of breaking window glasses of someone’s car or home.

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