Western India Automobile Association (WIAA), in collaboration with JK Tyre, successfully concluded yet another edition of Women's Rally to the Valley on 7th April, and to say the least, the sixth edition of the car rally served as a brilliant platform for women to come together and spread important social messages. On the occasion of WIAA's 100th anniversary, the committee decided to go one step further in pushing the rally's objective of women empowerment - this year's rally was organised by an all-women crew.
Starting from marshals, stewards from FMSCI, chairperson, chief guests, and every person who played a role in smooth functioning of the rally were all women. This is the first time a car rally at this scale has been organised by an all-women crew.
Monisha Dossa Bhatia, Vice Chairperson, Women's Rally to the Valley commented on the success of the rally saying: "Every participant is special to us! We are happy that we can provide a platform for these wonderful women to voice themselves to the world!”
“We had women support other women in this event. It just was not a three-day affair for us, with the briefing day, rally day and the prize distribution day. The messages of these powerful women will go a long way and inspire, educate and motivate the society."
Deepa Damodaran went home victorious in the TSD (Time Speed Distance) format road rally. Assisted by navigator Priyanka Videsh, Deepa logged only three penalty points, winning the top spot and a Rs 1,00,000 cash prize. WIAA held the prize distribution ceremony for the Rally to the Valley winners on 10th April. The winners in various categories were as follows:
Best decorated car
1st - Car number 07 'Pledge for Road Safety'. Team: Bina Shah, Zenobia Khodaiji, Vaishali Rode, and Hetal Dalal.
2nd - Car number 100 'Stages from a caterpillar to a cocoon to a butterfly' to spread the message to women to believe in themselves and never give up. Team: Mohini Chandan, Grishma Doshi, Hetal Doshi, and Dhanashree Shegde.
3rd - Car number 43 'Army behind Army' mothers, daughters, wives, and sisters who are a strength to Armymen. Team: Nirali Khandwala, Ritu Jain, Prity Tanna, and Archana Jambusaria.
Best dressed team
1st - Car number 37 'Statue of Liberty' Team: Kinjal Sakharka, Nimisha Nerurkar, and Aakanksha Ratreja.
2nd - Car number 07 'Pledge for Road Safety' Team: Bina Shah, Zenobia Khodaiji, Vaishali Rode, and Hetal Dalal.
3rd - Car number 56 Depicting first women fighter pilots of India - Awani, Bhawana, and Mohana. Team: Jagruti Sahu, Divya Kumar, Chitra, and Ajit Kaur Dhillon.
Best message on car
1st - Car number 117 'Stop Acid Attack. Stop Open Sale of Acid' Tagline: 'Man who attacked me will cover his face I WON'T....!' Team: Payal Mehta, Aati Gedia, Manisha Mehta, and Ashu Sharma.
2nd - Car number 103 'Oral Health' On the way from Worli to Aamby Valley, the team distributed oral kits to the street children at the traffic signals. Team: Kumkum Baidyaroy, Tanvi Jagtap, and Somita Pal.
3rd - Car number 39 'Women's Helpline' Tagline: 'Speak up for yourself. Help is just a phone call away.' Team: Hemali Gosalia, Jayshree Shah, and Pallavi Modi.
Best theme on car
1st - Car number 81 'Protectors' Protector of Self Pride, Family, Society, and Nation. Team: Dr Smita Dongre, Jyoti Vaidya, Meenal Kapoor, and Urmila Katkar.
2nd - Car number 77 'Veeranganas' - Voice of the Voiceless. Theme: Animal sexual abuse. Team: Minali Lalye, Sahana Pruthviraj, and Jagruti Hitnali.
3rd - Car number 122 Menstrual Hygiene. Team: Dr Sachi Shanbhag, Kriti Shanbhag, Dr Tanishta Rajesh, and Charu Shanbhag.
Best slogan on car
1st - Car number 114 'She flies with her own wings' Team: Snehal Shirke, Avan Modak, Anuya Bapat, and Dhanashree Mhatre.
2nd - Car number 107 'Bohat Ho Gaya Sehan, Behan Ab Kuch Bhi Pehan' Team: Sushma, Parinita, Niharika, and Prachi.
3rd - Car number 73 'I am rough, I am tough, I am enough' Team: Sanjana Minda, Kunjan Shah, Chaitali Doshi, and Hetal Mehta.
Most popular and active team on social media
Car number 78 'Sheroes'. Team: Janvi Mehta, Kiran Motwani, and Sudha Mahalakshmi.
WIAA's Women's Rally to the Valley is delivering very well on the objectives it set for itself 10 years ago when this rally was first organised. It is not only providing a platform for women empowerment, but it is also inculcating the idea of motorsports in Indian families.
But most of all, it is about women emerging as a stronger version of themselves at the finish line of this rally. It is quite a chain reaction – one woman who's empowered can pass on the strength – as Monisha Dossa Bhatia puts it quite simply: “Empowered women empower others.”