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Sep 08

Commonwealth Youth Games Pune 2008 celebrates “Sustainable Transport Day”: 3,000 People walk and cycle their way to a greener Pune
Pune, 20th September 2008: Commonwealth Youth Games Pune 2008 are to be held in Pune from 12th to 18th of October. As a part of their Green Games initiative, Commonwealth Youth Games Pune 2008 took charge to promote sustainable transport. Citizens of Pune took over the streets this morning to spread the message of using eco-friendly modes of transportation like walking, cycling, car-pooling and using Public transport. The spirit of Commonwealth Youth Games Pune 2008 was in the air as 3,000 Punekars gathered at Lakdi Pul (Sambhaji Bridge) to participate in a one of a kind walkathon and cycle rally. All were wearing masks of the official mascot for CYG Pune 2008, ‘Jigrr’, who was also present to cheer the participants.

Commonwealth Youth Games Pune 2008 is celebrating 20th to 28th September as Sustainable Transport Week wherein citizens of Pune will be motivated to use sustainable modes of transport. This spectacular rally marked the first day of this week long environmental exercise. The rally was flagged off by Mr. Mohan Dharia, President, Vanrai, Dr. Shashi Tharoor, Chairman, Commonwealth Games Green Council & former UN Under Secretary-General and Mr. Suresh Kalmadi, MP & Chairman, CYG Pune 2008 & CWG Delhi 2010.

The presence of Dr. Shashi Tharoor added to the passion of 2000 students present at the rally, to make Pune greener and cleaner. Dr. Tharoor said, “Today, Punekars have shown the way to the world. We can reduce the effects of Global warming and air pollution by using sustainable modes of transport like walking and cycling. Pune is going to host the Commonwealth Youth Games 2008, which has taken the initiative for Green Games; I congratulate them on taking this huge step towards a greener earth”. Mr. Kalmadi thanked everyone for having woken up so early in the morning and participating in this rally to promote the use of sustainable transport and be a part of the CYG Pune 2008 initiative. Also present were Mr. Prabjyot Sodhi from UNDP (United Nations Development Program) and Mr. V Subramanyam, former Secretary, Ministry of Renewable Energy.

People of all ages participated in this rally both individually and through their respective organizations. This rally saw large congregations of participants from Kaveri Jr. College, TATA Business Services, MIT School, Jetkings, Indira Institute and NIEM (National Institute of Event Management). Members of the Skater’s and Cycle Associations from Pune also participated in large numbers. Representatives of a CYG led initiative called Paryavaran Mitra, dedicated towards educating slum dwellers and youth about hygiene and environment, were present in hundreds. All were wearing white CYG Pune 2008 T-shirts and caps adding to the feeling of unity and enthusiasm.
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