From the outset, the Jagriti Yatra sounds crazy: It’s fourteen days on a train around India, starting (and culminating) at Mumbai, with over 450 amazing individuals who intend to cover twelve cities, while meeting role-models like Bunker Roy in Rajasthan, Anshu Gupta in Delhi, M S Swaminathan in Chennai, amongst others. And this description—the one of the outer journey—only scratches the surface of what this experience offers. It’s the inner journey—the touchy-feely bit—that takes the entire experience further.
Primarily, the Jagriti Yatra aims to ignite the spirit of entrepreneurship in its yatris. Entrepreneurship is fascinating: it goes all the way from running a provisions shop to building services that are shaping how billions of people communicate and share. What remains common throughout this spectrum of businesses is that they’re about change: change in society, change in power structures, change in ownership of one’s fortunes.
A trait common amongst operators of these businesses is perseverance. I had a chance to meet people from diverse economic, social, and educational backgrounds doing audacious work in a sincere effort to effect change. The Jagriti Yatra levels the playing field whilst encouraging its Yatris to level up together. The energy, enthusiasm, and passion is infectious.
From meeting a dropout from school who’s representing India at Australian Rules Football to a married Rajasthani woman leading development in her village through engagement of dozens of women in sewing and knitting clothing, slowly but surely, I learnt about the role models around me through meticulous activities conducted on the train.
Their willingness to share anecdotes of their respective struggles made me reconsider how I had dealt with such a situation in the past. They lent a strong hand in conditions unfamiliar to me and taught me a whole lot about camaraderie and the importance of caring about not just the work we do, but how we go about doing it.
450+ Number of participants in the fourteen-day Jagriti Yatra
The Yatris met role models like Bunker Roy and MS Swaminathan
Reach out: www.instagram.com/ishtaarth)