In his brief stay at Guwahati, Revanth Sai was visibly worn out and exhausted. Travelling on his KTM RC390, the nineteen year old boy from Puducherry did not have much time for this interview as he was lagging behind by seven months from his goal. Sai had travelled several cities including Silchar, Badarpur, Golaghat and Tezpur in his brief stay in Assam and now he is heading to West Bengal. Things, however, did not turn up as the young business management student planned it to be.
“I reached Manipur on March 19th. For the first month I stayed at a hotel in Imphal. I started running out of money in the later days of the national lock down. Everybody in the city looked at me with suspicion. I had to leave the hotel and move into a nearby forest for one month. I camped in the forest from April to May but locals drove me out as they believed I was a potential corona threat” says Ravanth.
Pursuing his BBA final year from VSM College Ramachandrapuram of Andhra Pradesh, Guralla Revanth Sai started his cross country bike trip on 10th February 2020 from Andhra Pradesh. Traversing through Odisha, West Bengal, Sikkim, Assam, Meghalaya, Tripura, and Mizoram, Sai reached Manipur. Carrying the flag of “Beti Bachao Beti Padhao” flying high, the young boy’s ambition is to be the youngest rider to complete the expanse of the country including Andaman & Niocbar Islands and Lakshadweep on his bike, a journey of around 45 to 50 thousand kilometers.
“I had approached everyone in Manipur to provide me an accommodation in the lockdown times. I had written to the chief minister too. When there was no response I went to his official residence. The officers then sent me to the quarantine center believing that I had entered the state after the lockdown. Though I tested negative I had to spend 33 days in the center from May to June" says Revanth. “In June a good soul showered some sympathy on me and allowed me a house on a rent for six thousand rupees. Till September I stayed in the rented house” added Revanth.
According to Revanth, he was assaulted twice in Manipur and somehow managed to dodge a loot attempt while he was crossing Manipur-Nagaland border. “In the last six months I woke up late, around 11 am so that I skip my breakfast and save money. My father who is a retired school principal in a government school is sponsoring me. He is my biggest support” says Revanth. “I have completed around 10 to 11 thousand kilometers of my route” added Sai.
In the initial days of his journey, Revanth used to visit schools and meet students trying to make them aware of “Beti Bachao Beti Padhao”. He distributed books among orphans, but due to the pandemic induced lockdown and the post restriction, he has not been able to do so off late.
It was late in the afternoon and completing his interview in the capital streets of Guwahati, Revanth bid adieu and carried on with his journey as he needs to complete it by December 31st to be the youngest Indian to do so. Most of the pleasant and not so pleasant memories of his journey is been recorded in the helmet mounted GoPro camera.
Determined Revanth now has to cover 22 more states including Lakshadweep and Andaman Nicobar Island which he shall reach by ship from Cochin.