Naga bikers

Kohima: The Nagaland Motorcycle Club (NMC) marked World Motorcycle Day by donating Rs 1.08 lakh to the field staff of the state power department. The donation was the bikers’ way of acknowledging the hard work done by the power department in the collective fight against COVID-19.

The club, which consists of 79 members, raised the funds in just three days. The money was donated to the power department personnel in the districts of Kohima, Dimapur, and Tuensang, where the club has its three chapters.

Speaking with EastMojo, founding member of NMC, Peter Rutsa, said, “Our government, NGOs, and others are coming together to assist our healthcare workers and frontline workers. In the process, out of foresight or ignorance, we tend to forget the field workers.”

So, to mark the day, the NMC members decided to show appreciation to the field staffs of the power department who have been taking the additional risk to ensure uninterrupted power supply across the state. He said that although the club has been doing charity activities over the years, this initiative was a “sudden” plan. In a short interaction with the field staff, he said that a leader of the staff also shared how the field workers are not being paid on time.

Even as the workers shared their shortcomings, Rutsa said that the employees were appreciative of their officers who would pay them in advance even when their dues are delayed.

Another concern is that most field-staffs from the power department are yet to be vaccinated, despite their work requiring them to enter containment and sealed areas. While many are at home, there are government employees who are getting paid without working, and others are also at an advantage of getting to work from home. However, field staffs are required to respond to duty, no matter the situation, he said.

As everyone deserves to be vaccinated, Rutsa said that the government should also prioritise vaccination for field-staffs who are delivering their duties without fail.

“The beautiful thing about this drive is that even few of our members who are infected by COVID-19 and are in isolation also donated,” he said, adding that a person alone can do well but can do bigger things when together.

While the motorcyclists has not been travelling for long while now, he said that through the club, the members have become really encouraging to each other, especially during these times. And as members of the club come from all tribes and all professions, he lightly said “We also learn to tolerate each other”.

The oldest member of the club is 68 years, and the youngest 27 years. Although there is no age bar, he said that some of the few criteria to become a member of NMC include being financially independent as its activities include charity and travel, besides having no pending criminal cases, and not indulging in drugs.

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