Mangaluru, (DHNS): A team of bikers from Udupi travelled to Khardung La in Ladakh, the highest motorable road in the world, on their motorbikes recently. The bikers rode for a total of 4,600 km to reach Khardung La - 18,380 feet above the sea level - and waved the Tulu Nadu flag. They took approximately one month to complete their journey. They travelled the distance to create awareness on Tulu culture and tradition and to spread a message on the need conserve forest and judicious use of water. The bikers team, led by Kishan M, a resident of Kukkikatte Kasturba Nagara, Udupi, comprised Sujith, Sujan, Vinayak Vijay, Rakesh and Prashanth. They rode on their RX135 2001 model bikes. “Throughout the journey, we created awareness on judicious use and conservation of water. We also highlighted on forest conservation and the need to increase the green belt in the country,” Kishan said.
The team also wanted to create awareness on the need to include Tulu, one of the five Dravidian languages, in the Eighth Schedule of the Constitution. “For most North Indians, Karnataka means only Bengaluru. We wanted to highlight the rich cultural legacy of Tulu Nadu,” he added. The team left Udupi on June 20 after offering prayers at Kadiyali Mahishamardhini Temple and returned on July 18. “We reached Khardung La on July 8 and waved the Indian flag and the Tulu Nadu flag,” he said proudly. From Udupi, they travelled through Bhatkal, Belagavi, Kolhapur, Pune, Gujarat, Rajasthan, Punjab, Jammu, Vaishno Devi, Sonamarg, Ladakh and finally reached Khardung La. From Khardung La, they visited Turtuk, the last village of Jammu and Kashmir. “We stayed in Ladakh for two days to adjust our body to the extreme weather conditions. In Rajasthan, we stayed for six days, to visit all the tourist spots. We serviced our bikes in Punjab,” he said. Kishan, a marine engineer and a biking enthusiast, started Team Hot Pistonz. The team has performed over 60 bike stunts and was the runner-up at the competitions held in Goa and Kerala. The team showcases stunts during Udupi Krishnashtami celebrations.
On the journey, he said, “One needs to be extra careful while riding in different parts of the country as the roads are not known to us. The people were helpful throughout.” They experienced extreme cold temperatures in the tough terrain. “We had to carry a small oxygen cylinder to Khardung La,” he said and added that they rode only during the day and rested during the night. “We had carried all the necessary equipment including first aid box, tool box, yoga mat, pillow and other necessary items along with us. As it was a long drive, we had to carry all the documents as well,” he said. Kishan and his team plan to carry the social message and travel to Nepal and Bhutan.
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