22 January, 2021

Fearless Nadia Rides Again

She’s taken the plunge. Desi sisters are tapping into their latent, restless adventure gene.

Fearless Nadia Rides Again
outlookindia.com
-0001-11-30T00:00:00+05:53

Long ago, in Hoshiarpur in Punjab, shopkeepers would hurry out of their stores and elders would pause on their hookah puffs to get a glimpse of the little girl who had just vroomed past them on her scooter. Three decades later, open-mouthed stares still follow Moksha Jetley as she sits astride her silver-grey 350cc Royal Enfield, leading bikers—mostly men—up precarious mountain slopes to Leh and Spiti or past parched dunes in Rajasthan.

Miles away, on a different terrain, Poonam Darne, a scuba-diving instructor with Ocean Pearls in Havelock Island, evokes a similar reaction of incredulity. “Are you going to take me scuba- diving?”—most tourists hesitantly ask this when they see a woman dive leader. “Their faces fall at first,” Poonam laughs, “but once they have explored the ocean with me, they insist I lead them on subsequent dives too!”

It irritates Anita Deshpande no less when people ask her at meetings, “Who’s the man running the show?” Anita and her...

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