At an age in which children are usually busy watching cartoons or playing video games, 10-year-old Arav Bhardwaj of Delhi has embarked on a cycling trip of 2,500 km to spread the message of Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose.
Arav, a class 6 student, started his journey on April 14 at Moirang in Manipur where Bose's Indian National Army (INA) raised the tricolour on April 14, 1944. Accompanied by his father Atul M Bhardwaj -- a doctor, he reached Alipurduar in West Bengal on his bicycle on Tuesday.
Arav said that he was inspired by Bose's fight for India's Independence. "When I was in class 2, my grandfather started telling me stories about our freedom fighters. He gave me many books about the country's freedom struggle. It was at that time that I got inspired by Netaji and his fight for the country," he said.
"I wanted to do something on the 75th year of India's Independence, and the 125th birth anniversary of Netaji," he added. Arav said that his family supported his idea of the cycling trip with his father accompanying him on the journey.
The cycling expedition, which will conclude at the National War Memorial in New Delhi, aims to spread the message of national unity, he said. Arav said that he wants to join the Army in the future. "I want to serve the country," he said.