We live in a country where we are still a little taken aback to see a woman driving a car. All-women expeditions are still a rarity, even after 70 years of Independence. Amidst such a scenario, it is heartening to see four women endeavouring on a road trip from Coimbatore to London, in a high-end Tata Hexa sponsored by Tata Motors. Their mission is to promote the cause of the Rotarary India Literacy Mission, which aims at achieving total literacy and providing quality education all over India.
The name of the trip is XPD 24/70, through which they intend to cover 24 countries, including the Netherlands, Poland, Switzerland, Bulgaria, Austria, France, Belgium, China, and Myanmar in 70 days. XPD in the name stands for expedition, and it has been planned over 70 days as an attempt to pay tribute to and remember 70 years of Independence, Meenakshi Arvind told The Times of India.
Meenakshi, from Coimbatore, is the one who took the initiative for this expedition; she was then joined by Mookambika Rathnam from Pollachi, Priya Rajpal from Mumbai, and Ruckmani V. from Chennai. Though they have been exploring all possible ways to get sponsorship and make this dream possible since December, there hasn’t been much support. Hence, they have cut down on the Guinness attempt. In spite of that, they have to spend Rs 40 lakh from their own pockets as the sponsorship they got is only somewhere around Rs 20 lakh.
There are other challenges that the women are prepared to face on the course of their trip. That includes having to carry extra fuel in their vehicle as diesel will not be available in Uzbekistan and a 180-km leg in Kyrgyzstan that will take seven hours to complete because of rubble, according to The News Minute.
All four women have taken two days training in car repairs, and they plan to cover 500 km every day. The women started their journey this past Sunday, March 26, and plan on reaching London by June 5.