Naval officer on a mission on wheels

Naval officer on a mission on wheels

Lieutenant Commander Manoj Gupta of the Indian Navy has taken up a solo cycle expedition from Kashmir to Kanyakumari to create awareness about the defence forces and to raise funds for the martyred and injured defence personnel.

The cycle expedition reached Mangaluru on Sunday and left for Kerala.

Gupta is on a mission on his bicycle to enhance awareness about the Armed Forces Flag Day and to raise funds for the widows and families of jawans who died on duty and those jawans who were disabled on duty.

Lt Com Manoj started his expedition from Khardung-La pass in Leh on June 6 and after 32 days and covering eight states, he entered Mangaluru. Track and Trail Cycle Company, one of the sponsors, welcomed him at Ballalbagh.

Lt Com Gupta is a native of Mumbai and joined the Navy eight years ago. He is working at the Indian Naval Academy at Ezhimala, Kerala.

He said that he decided to travel 4,000 kms and travels daily around 100 km to 140 km in the daytime. The expedition will conclude at Kanyakumari on July 16, he added.

After travelling to Jammu and Kashmir, Himachal Pradesh, Haryana, Delhi, Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, he reached Karnataka. From Mangaluru, he will proceed to Kannur and Kochi before reaching Kanyakumari.

He said he stays at the Sainik Welfare Board guest houses at nights. Wherever the guest houses are not available, he stays at private lodges. Many have donated funds during his journey.

“People have been cooperative in all the places I have travelled,” he said.

Armed Forces Flag Day is observed on December 7. The Sainik Welfare Board raises funds by selling the flags.

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