New Indian Express, India
Guiding drivers, with a braille map
By Express News Service - BANGALORE
18th June 2012 10:47 AM
CAPTION: A visually-challenged person guiding a driver at Foresight 2012, a car rally organised in
Bangalore on Sunday I Sudhakar Jain "It was always I who was being taken around by people. Today I
am directing someone around the city," said Vijayalakshmi, who used a Braille route map to guide
Visually challenged Vijayalakshmi is an Arts graduate who works at the National Aerospace
Dayal drove a 50 kilometre-long obstacle track around the city in the fund-raising event Foresight
2012, a car rally organised here on Sunday by Bangalore Knights Round Table 174 and Bangalore
Knights Ladies Circle 107, in association with the National Association for the Blind.
For Banayya, a twenty-year-old man who is pursuing a basic Computers Science Course at the National
Association for the Blind this was an opportunity to meet new people and to know places around
"This is the first time I am participating in a car rally. I am really excited", he said.
Nearly, 150 visually challenged children and adults from various institutes across the city
participated in the event.
Excitement loomed large as each one of them was coupled with a participant to take them around and
finally to the finishing line.
The Braille map was prepared carefully, concentrating on two essential things that the navigator can
sense-speed breakers and bumpy or bad roads.
The count of the speed breakers became a sign of assurance for the participants that they were on
the right track. It told them whether or not it was the time to take a turn.
"This is really like a mystery movie. How are we supposed to know where the checkpoints will come?"
said Ashok, a participant.
There were checkpoints installed at three locations along the rally track to check if the
participants arrived too early or too late.
The event almost had forty participants, who drove.
Three awards were given in each of the five categories of Expert, Novice, Ladies, Vintage cars, and
the Eco- cars to both the drivers and navigators.
A number of visually challenged participants took part in instrumental music and dance performances
on the occasion.
Along with other models, they also participated in the fashion parade conducted by designer Prasad