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Swami inspires bike rally

An international bike rally to campaign for blood donation, inspired by youth icon Swami Vivekananda, zoomed off from Jamshedpur on Monday after an overnight halt.

A group of 50 men from Assam, Meghalaya, Bengal and Rajasthan, promoting blood donation through Vivek Rally, reached Jamshedpur from Midnapore on Sunday, a day after Vivekananda’s 150th birth anniversary on January 12. Jamshedpur Blood Bank chairperson Surekha Nerurkar flagged it off on Monday for Ranchi.

The campaign on wheels — 25 motorcycles in all — started from Indo-Bangladesh border on January 1. The bikers will reach Wagah border on January 23 but the rally will culminate at Silchar on February 8.

Associate outfits include Federation of Blood Donor Organisations in India, Barak Valley Voluntary Blood Donors’ Forum, Assam; Barasat Municipality, West Bengal and West Bengal Voluntary Blood Donors’ Forum. The rally is supported by Naco, Union ministry of health and family welfare and Belur Math.

The bikers started their journey from Sutarkandi, near India-Bangladesh border in south Assam. En route to Wagah border, they are traversing 11 states — Assam, Meghalaya, Bengal, Jharkhand, Bihar, Uttar Pradesh, Delhi, Haryana, Chandigarh, Punjab and Rajasthan — and 150 cities.