The Ferocious Gang of Seven: Women Who Rode Up The Mana Pass

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Enmeshed in the tentacles of patriarchy and misogyny, India witnesses umpteen number of crimes against women everyday and many of the cases, many of the perils go unheard. Those that do reach the court of law, take years before justice is finally allotted to the victim! How can one forget the dialogue of Sunny Deol in Damini? “Milti hai toh sirf tareekh pe tareekh!” Nobody is trying to act melodramatic here or posit the craziness which Indians have for Bollywood. But quite interestingly one also cannot ignore the realism the Indian cinema displays on the screen and this dialogue of Deol imbued with apoplexy, frustration and despair presents the dark face of Indian Judiciary which has severely failed in dispensing quick justice to the victims.

In a society where thousands of restrictions are imposed on the fairer sex at every step, seven women from Maharashtra, recently undertook a tough expedition to Mana Pass on the India-China border in Uttarakhand. Professional rider Sheetal Bidaye, software design strategist Kanchan K. Tamhankar, fitness expert Trupti Sarmalkar, advertising professional Shubhangi Manjrekar, interior designer Shalaka Zad, business consultant Bhavana Issar, and insurance agent Sneh Joshi hopped on to their bikes and made their way from Dehradun, the state capital of Uttarakhand, towards the highest motorable pass at 18,399 ft above sea level.

mana pass
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Heartily welcomed by the jawans at the border, the women bought themselves some exquisite memories to cherish upon till their last breath. Their grit, desire and capability helped them in covering such long distance in a single day. Throwing a challenge at life, they rode fearlessly on the narrow winding path, with stone mountain walls on one side and the steep valley on the other. For 15 days, they travelled through the picturesque yet rough terrain of Nelang valley and Jhadung village before reaching Uttarkashi from where they went onto Tilwara, Badrinath and finally to Mana Gaon, the last village in the Indian territory.

Being the quintessential example of strong, independent women ‘the seven’ have given the entire fraternity of womanhood a reason to smile upon and feel proud of. As they geared their bikes and gushed out in speed towards their destination as the whirls of dust rose and fell, these wonder-women have sent a message in loud and clear words to the whole world, which is “Why should boys have all the fun?”

(Source: http://www.thebetterindia.com/49113/first-women-ride-bike-mana-pass/, http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/dehradun/Women-bikers-attempt-record-at-Mana-Pass/articleshow/49277548.cms

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