The News International
April 27 2000
UK Rider calls for protecting motorcyclists rights
by Amir Mohammed Khan
PESHAWAR: Roads in Pakistan are in a very bad condition and driving on these roads is the worst, said Simon Milward who is on a world ride on his motorbike to raise funds for humanitarian causes.
In an interview qwith the News during his brief stopover in Peshawar, he said discrimination was rampant against motor riders in Pakistan.
Motorcycles were banned on Motorway which, he opined, suggested discriminatory motorbike legislation. He questioned the ban on pillion riding. He said he felt this ban was introduced after some terrorist attack involviung use of motorcycles. "Why is there no ban on motor cars because they too have been used in terrorist activities.? We need a strong consumer organanisation in Pakistan to protect the rights of bike riders," he argued.
Simon Milward, 35, comes from Exeter in South West England. He started his journey on January 1 this year and has so far visited 14 countries including Italy, Greece, Turkey, Syria, Jordan, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates, UK, Belgium, Luxembourg, France and Pakistan. He plans to visit 70 more countries to complete the task. Through this world ride, he says, he was turning his lifetime dream of circumnavigating the world by motorcycle into reality.
The other objective, he said, was to raise funds for humanitarian medical aid. So far, he added, he had collected $12,000 while his target is to raisde $100,000 for Doctors without Borders and Riders for Health.
These two organisations, he said, work for the provision medical relief to populations in crisis. Those individuals who give a donation, he said, would ghet a badge and email updates while business organisations would get publicity relative to size of donation plus emails and sticker on the bike. This way, he added, the donator would get publicity and needy patients medical help through the donation.
In Pakistan, he said, he had visited Gilgit, Swat, down from Karachi, Lahore and Faisalabad. His ride in Pakistan, he added, was fantastic experience but the most beautiful place here, he added, is Swat. Pakistan is the most interesting and enjoyable country, he said. "I got fantastic reception from the people."
"Pakistan needs honest leaders coming from the people. You cannot expect the problems to be miraculously solved by anyone. It is hard work, but worth the effort which must come from the people themselves. So simply, the literate class must take some responsibilities because Pakistan deserves and honest and credible government at the end of the transition," he said.
Accordiong to his plan, he said, his ride around the world should finish in Summer 2001 but expected it would take end in Autumn or Winter because the Sahara Desert needed to be croissed before the Summer if not then after the Summer which, he added, would delay the ride.