Backpacking boys make journey of a lifetime
By A Sharadhaa | Published: 19th December 2012 10:47 AM |
Dinesh Menaria an MBA in marketing and retail management from IIM and Shobhit Sharma an MBA in marketing and international business from IMS Dehradun worked for a telecom company as area sales managers in Bangalore. The two like-minded colleagues who wanted something more from life came together in their search for that one satisfying element.
“We felt that we were here to do something for humanity and for the country than to ourselves,” said Dinesh. This prompted their journey of experience, learning and a journey of transformation which they named ‘Sancharan’. "We set out to experience our love for the open roads of India. With just a backpack and each other for company we took off on November 15, 2011. The journey took us to a virgin India where we could overhaul the essence of life through spirituality, adventures and social acquaintance,” they chorus.
Buses, trains, cycles, motorcycles, took the two back-packers through 22,589km over 309 days. Shuffling between nomadic and lavish lifestyles, Dinesh and Shobhit experienced Incredible India in its schools, tribes, seashores, oceans, villages and mountains.
Their journey began from the West then south and finally ended at the Himalayas. The best part of the journey was that they did not carry any money to support themselves and instead earned to finance their travels. “We took general compartments in trains. After five months of our journey we bought a used bike only to explore more inside villages and the Himalayas. We used funds that we had reserved for medical emergencies. We did not face any major problems for food and stay as Indians have a large heart. People we met along the journey took care of us. We did carry a tent, when we did not get accommodation, we slept in our tents.”
Throughout the journey, their single point of contact was Prashanth Sambargi, through whom they got the encouragement to take up the journey. “I used to be in touch with them to know about their whereabouts and would update their parents regularly. There was a lot of discouragement from everybody about their journey. I stood by them. I am glad, they were successful,” he said.
The journey was no picnic for them. “We saw some bad days and some good ones. It was a daring adventure. Twenty years from now we will disappointed by the thought that we did not do something,” said Shobhit, adding, "We got to know India better and saw her charisma change every 100km.”
The unplanned and spontaneous Sancharan is over but journey doesn't end here for them. They have a vision, they want to implement what they learnt out of this journey. “While traveling, we saw what rural India lacks. When we visited schools, colleges, and had sessions with students on career guidance, computers, etc. We realised that the solution for all their problems lies in education. Vocational education with moral values will help them lead a sustainable life. There are more than 6,00,000 villages in India and the children here are way to far from this sort of education who are born with endless capabilities and possibilities. Now we have taken a pledge to make things right. We wish to make education an overall development programme,” revealed Dinesh.