Sarika Panda Bhatt, Co-Founder, Raahgiri Day
Sarika Panda Bhatt, an Associate Director at Nagarro, is co-founder of Raahgiri Day, India’s longest-running urban movement.
“It’s not an accident, it’s an incident.”
On today’s episode of The Brand Called You, we have Ms. Sarika Panda Bhatt. A very successful professional from the fields of Architecture and Sociology. Sarika is the Co-Founder of Raahgiri, India’s longest-running urban movement. She is also associated with Vision Zero, a road safety initiative for pedestrians and cyclists. She is recognized among the ‘ 40 most remarkable women of the transport sector in the world’
Sarika has a Bachelor’s degree in Architecture and a Master’s degree in Sociology. She has studied both subjects in-depth and has used them to the advantage of society.
In this very interesting conversation, Sarika throws light on her early life and her journey from the small town of Orissa into the giant corporate and societal world. She talks about Raahgiri and explains the many challenges faced by her team in establishing this initiative.
Talking about Vision Zero, Sarika mentions the importance of proper road engineering. She mentions startling statistics with respect to accidents and road crashes.
Sarika puts forth the striking reality of Indian Roads. And she works towards bettering this situation through her work.
Sarika Panda Bhatt, an Associate Director at Nagarro, is co-founder of Raahgiri Day, India’s longest-running urban movement. She is a highly accomplished architect and urban planner working in the fields of urban developments, transport, environment, and architecture.
Sarika hails from a small town in Kalahandi district of Odisha and completed her schooling from Bhawani Patna. She pursued her Architecture at Bhubaneshwar and then at the School of Planning and Architecture at New Delhi. She has indeed broken barriers moving from her early days in the small town to holding a top-notch corporate profile.
She developed the unique and exceptionally successful concept of Raahgiri which is continuously duplicating and has reached over 70 big and small cities of India. She also holds the chair as a trustee in the Raahgiri Foundation.
Raahgiri Day, India’s first sustained car-free citizen initiative, began in Gurgaon on Nov 17, 2013. The movement was conceptualised by the Raahgiri Foundation. It started by cordoning off 4.5 kilometers of streets around DLF 4 and Galleria Road in Gurgaon every Sunday morning for few hours. The movement brought out a huge turnout of people from all walks of life every week on the streets. The authorities joined hands, being compelled to change their mindset to understand importance of Safe Streets for all.
This movement of Raahgiri Day has been rotating across Gurgaon over the last 6 years in various locations, spreading the word of sustainable living and minimal transport vehicles on the roads. Last year onwards Raahgiri Night began in select market places in Gurgaon making them vehicle-free zone once a week.
Sarika leads the non-motorised transport work and India Vision Zero work in Haryana and Punjab that looks at road safety of vulnerable road users, especially pedestrians and cyclists. Last year, Sarika was judged as one of 40 most remarkable women in the world who are working in the transport sector by TUMI Germany. She was also selected as the Bicycle Mayor of Gurugram by BYCS Netherlands.
Sarika truly inspires us to follow her footsteps and build our lives along her guided path of sustainable and eco-friendly living.