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11th July 2017, Mumbai

Mumbai’s textiles fraternity runs 10K run

Some 2,000 runners from across the city, 50 cotton growing farmers from Vidarbha & Maharashtra, alumni of the Sasmira Institute of Textiles, family members of forgotten textile workers, Star Runners and more came together for the heritage run hosted by Sasmira Alumni Foundation.

The cause No Naked Child was a unique initiative, which aims to provide clothing to under privileged children across the country, was an effort to galvanise the alumni and others from the textiles industry in a unique way to execute the world's 1st Textile Community Run, Texathon.

Textiles industry members come together. © Sasmira Alumni Foundation

The event was graced by Kavita Gupta, Textile Commissioner of India. “I am really very happy that SAF has put together this first of its kind event in the world which throws light on two key aspects, one is the cause of No Naked Child, which means clothing for the under-privileged through the run and other is the Physical Fitness which takes a back seat in this otherwise glamorous world.  Texathon has thus aimed to bring two energies together making it a memorable event for the Textile fraternity,” she said.

Texathon

Texathon was run at distances of 10k, 5k, 3.5k respectively. The run traversed through scenic parts of Mumbai covering the Indu Mills, Cadell Rd, Kirti College and Catering College junctions, old bungalow of David Sassoon, Century Bazaar, Mayor’s Bungalow at Shivaji Park etc.

The run commenced and ended at one of the heritage mills of Mumbai, Indu Mills Compound. The 10k run was won by Swapnil Sawant with a time of 35.20 mins. He was followed by Sachin Grote in second and Ashish Sapkal in third place. In the women’s race, Varsha Bhawari came first, followed by Simta Sharma and Shweta Gawade. Gurzarilal Chandra (62), a farmer who came out to support the cause, clocked the fourth fastest time of the race.

The run commenced and ended at one of the heritage mills of Mumbai, Indu Mills Compound. © Sasmira Alumni Foundation

"It’s a proud moment for us, since we, the textile fraternity could curate this beautiful thought of Texathon. The team over the last few months has been working religiously towards Garment Collection Drive and have managed to raise a sizeable amount of clothing and still counting, also the farmer community support has been a boon to us all and most importantly the heritage venue of Indu Mills by NTCC has been the icing on the cake. We look forward to many more seasons and years to come,” said Mr Sharad Tandon, President, SAF.

The event also saw participation of 50 cotton growing farmers from Marathwada & Vidarbha areas of Maharashtra. The whole idea was that the entire value chain right from producers (farmers) to manufacturers (textiles industry) to end users (community) participated in the run.

Latest trends in technology

The event saw farmers exposed to the latest trends in technology serving the growing textiles industry. SAF facilitated the visit of the farmer community to the government of India designated Centre of Excellence for agrotextiles at the Sasmira campus in Worli.

Cotton growing farmers participated in the run. © Sasmira Alumni Foundation

Manish Daga, of SAF, said: “First time ever in history of any race of any size, Cottonguru is able to initiate and mobilise 50 genuine and progressive cotton farmers to participate 'without any complaint and demand' with the sole intention of getting them accepted as an integral part of the cotton textile supply chain.”

SAF has reached out to many helping hands to give their surplus clothing to the No Naked Child cause, the contributions of which will be given to Goonj, a national NGO founded by Anshu Gupta who states.

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