Pedaling love around the country
TIMES NEWS NETWORK [ TUESDAY, JANUARY 01, 2002 10:53:02 PM ]
Ex-serviceman Harikishan Kadukar is a possessed man, seeking to spread the message of peace and amity among Indians, through his nation-wide cycle expedition. Harikishan took up long distance cycling in 1984, and in 1998, after he became a member of the Baha.i religious community in India, he decided to preach during his long cycling tours.
On December 20, 2001, he undertook his third annual cycling expedition from his hometown Nagpur. After his visit to Akola, Buldana, Shirdi and Nasik, he reached Mumbai, where he has lodged himself at Mumbai.s Bahai Centre at Churchgate.
Kadukar carries his make-shift tents and food rations on his bicycle, stopping at villages during the day.s journey. Here he calls upon the panchayat, spreads pamphlets with the message of peace, and tells people to live in amity, regardless of what their religious leaders and politicians tell them. His family, comprising his three daughters and one son, doesn.t mind his yearly tour that lasts one month, which he undertakes during his one-month vacation from his job as a watchman. Kadukar.s own explanation is that he has spend his life on serving himself, and now he must help the society by spreading the message of peace.
Kadukar explains what keeps him driven, I was taught by my father to value the principle of unity of mankind, and amity. But throughout my life, I found that there was hatred among people of various castes and religious groups. I believe that just as different body parts though having different function, let the body operate as a whole, all communities should work together for a united India.. Kadukar believes that all religions teach peace, and that people should think for themselves what their religion stands for, rather than blindly follow religious leaders.
A K Merchant, Director, Baha.i Office of External Affairs, explains that the Baha.i centre is aiding Kadukar in his mission to spread peace. .The purpose of following religion should not be to divide mankind into separate groups, but to realise the oneness of God. People should understand that religious teachings should not be limited to individual selfishness but must encompass social concerns..
©Copyright 2002, The Times of India