Good News today! NAD members – Mr. A. S. Narayanan, President, NAD; Mr. Anuj Jain, Joint Secretary and Mr. Vishal Arora, Treasurer met Mr. Shinan PS, who is a deaf bike rider from Thrissur, Kerala, on 14th August 2017 at the India Habitat Centre, Lodhi Road, New Delhi.
Mr. Narayanan asked him a few questions while there were other people gathered there watching the interview unfold.
First question put up to him was, “Does he have a driving license and what’s his goal for the journey?” He did indeed have a driving license but it wasn’t easy to get it as the licensing authority rejected him because he was deaf the first time he went to get the license. He added that, “Hearing people have so many opportunities and I would look at that and think how I can also do the same. Then the thought struck me that yes a deaf person like me can also ride the bike, travel this far and break every barrier. Both the deaf and hearing communities should be equal on the same level.”
Mr. Shinan PS told him that he started his journey with a hearing bikers group from Kerala and his first stop was Goa. From Goa he rode alone by himself to Pune then Mumbai. In Mumbai, NIHH felicitated him. They were impressed to see a deaf biker. A few people in Mumbai supported me and made me part of their club. In Nasik, their deaf association supported me and provided place to stay. Then I went to Vadodara in Gujrat. I interacted with the people and got their support too. In Ahmedabad, I met a lot of deaf people and it was fun. I got donation from a few individuals there. Later went to Udaipur in Rajasthan. I met the deaf people and they were surprised and impressed at the same time to meet me. I also received govt. recognized certificate. In Jaipur, we got pictures clicked and my name was in the print news. From there I went to Agra and finally arrived here in Delhi.”
Mr. Narayanan then told the audience, “Wonderful, thank you. You all must not think that this much travelling on bike is easy. It is quite hard. Food, fuel and other expenses are there. If I was in his place managing all that won’t be possible for me. So, it is very commendable and brave of him. I request you all let’s come together and support him, sharing a one time donation.”
Mrs. Reena Jain, NAD’s North India Deaf Women Committee, asked a question on how he manages all the expenses, to which Mr. Shinan answered,” I welcome any kind of donations and also happily accept invitations to stay the night to sleep. At one place I was hanging out with the deaf group and they said we will pay for your food.”
Mr. Shinan had a glass cutting business which he managed himself but left it 2 months ago when he embarked on this journey. People would stop him and get pictures clicked with him and meeting deaf people from different states also extended his time.
NAD Treasurer, Mr. Vishal Arora asked the people there that who would like to join him and ride like him to which there were a few hands raised interested for the same!
Mr. Anuj Jain, Joint Secretary, NAD told that, “So as you go ahead in your journey and finish it safely without accident, we will make a proof report and present it to the Ministry of Road and Transport of India and show them that a deaf person can drive and ride and hopefully the government passes law to give driving license to the deaf.”
Next he travels to Kashmir then Nepal to Bhutan to Assam to Kolkata to Orissa to Hyderabad to and finally back to his hometown Thrissur, Kerala. He feels safe and confident going ahead and in case of any trouble he has hearing friends and Whatsapp group of bike riders. He’s careful and follows a strict time rule too. Morning 6am to evening 6pm only.
When asked about has the police ever stopped him, he said that yes just once in Mumbai but he showed the blue sign which says the driver is deaf and police let him go, no other happening like that.
Mr. Narayanan concluded, “That’s sweet and beautiful he has that sign board on the bike, travelling all over India.” And everyone went for a group photo session.