KOCHI: Riding a bike and traversing harsh terrains may not exactly be synonymous with teenage dreams, but trust Anfy Maria Baby and her friend Anagha T M to break the mould. The duo, from Chalakkudi, is on a mission to ride their bullets to the Himalayas to propagate the message on women empowerment.
“We wish to give a strong statement about the importance of women’s safety. Our ride is a way of expressing our solidarity to all women who are forced to the fringes of society”, says Anfy Maria with a determination.
Anfy and Anagha will start their trip from Thrissur on June 19 in their rented bullets. They intend to cover 6,000 kilometres in their 18-day long trip from Delhi to Leh via Manali. They also will touch the world’s highest motorable road Khardung La. Anfy and Anagha also wish to keep a record of their journey, making it a travelogue and have hired a cameraman for the purpose. “We want to tell the world the beautiful terrains we crisscrossed and the obstacles we overcame,” says the duo. That said, they are also aware of the potential dangers lying ahead.
The difficult roads, deep gorges, extreme climate and other dangers women might encounter, but they are determined to survive the odds, with all the support from their parents and friend. Both are also undergoing severe training to beat the tough roads. Not just the terrains, even the cost incurred for such a long ride is an obstacle for the duo. “Renting two 350 CC bullets along with a hired cameraman amounts up to Rs 5 lakh. We are looking for sponsors as we can’t take this up alone. Despite all odds, we are determined to take this forward,” says Anagha.
Love for bullets
Anagha recalls her first experience on a bullet. She says she was just taking up a challenge when she first rode a bullet for the first time. “A friend of mine challenged me to ride the bullet. I did and felt exhilarated. It was like riding an elephant,” she says and Anfy agrees. Their experience as riders has boosted their confidence. Anfy says they are now treated with respect by fellow riders as they whizz by on their bikes. “We had our share of mistreatments on the road, but the confidence we gained by riding bullets is beyond words,” says the girls.
Anagha and Anfy first met when they were in school, and their friendship only grew with time. Both started riding bicycle at an age of nine and later graduated into gearless scooters and then to bullets. “It is our love for bullets that brought us together,” says the girls. Anfy is a BBA student while Anagha pursues a course in graphic design.