Goa based Pooja Rajput charts 2000 kilometres; rides solo on her Harley-Davidson

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Spreads the message of women empowerment through her solo travel

Sending out a strong message of empowerment, Lieutenant Commander Pooja Rajput, who lives in Vasco, who undertook a 2,000-km solo coastal ride on her Harley Davidson Fat Bob, spoke about how women should travel without any pre-conceived notions.All praises for the machine that accompanied her on this journey, Pooja said, “The road presence of the Fat Bob gave me so much confidence and the comfort of riding is surely one of the best. The performance of the bike with engine torque of 121 Nm, RPM of 3500 with a displacement of 1585 cc is supreme.”

It might have been a solo ride, but she never felt she was alone. “The legacy of Harley-Davidson and the brotherhood is truly amazing. Wherever I go I am never alone, it has given me so many friends,” Pooja added.

With this ride, Pooja’s goal was to spread the message of women empowerment and safety for women who ride by themselves.

“Women need to take up travel in India without pre-conceived notions,” said Rajput, who traveled across Goa, Mangalore, Coorg, Muzhappilangad, Ooty, Coonoor, Calicut, Moodabidri and Karwar over a period of a week earlier this year.

Asked if she was worried about her safety, the officer said that she was prepared.

“When you are a woman riding on a 1600 cc superbike, it attracts lots of attention and there are lots of curious people on the road who try to stop you, of whom you should be aware. They can create a situation like an accident,” she said.

She strongly advices women to not fear venturing out on their own — and being prepared rather than afraid.

“I have a knife with me all the time, I have an iron baton, and a pepper spray… All these things are in my jacket pocket, or my pants pocket. Women should also learn some self-defense techniques,” she said.

She said that through her travels, she also met many people who encouraged her.

“There were a lot of people who were very happy to see me. At petrol pumps, families would ask to be photographed with me,” she said.Pooja remembers how somewhere along her journey, people told her that they would want their children to be free in their thoughts and pursue their dreams like her. She believes that’s been her best compliment so far.

The route chosen by her comprised of all terrains; from beaches, coastal roads to serpentine roads and hilly areas with several hairpin bends that tested her abilities and superbike.

“Throughout the journey, the narrow roads and small bridges which made for picturesque images were breathtaking. Riding through the roads in the wildlife sanctuaries was an experience in its own and cannot be described in words,” Rajput concluded