The recently concluded Mumbai Marathon on Sunday was the curtain raiser to a new decade of the event in the city. Now in its 11th edition, the marathon has become a fixture on the city’s calendar, a looked forward to event for fitness enthusiasts and spectators alike.
It is up to the Mumbaikar, both layperson and police alike, to keep the spirit alive. This year’s edition, while being a gut wrenching, adrenalin-packed event like it usually is, saw trademark Mumbai discipline slipping up at times. On the Worli Sea Face stretch, some persons were seen walking on the course, even as some runners were negotiating it; they were wandering about, trying to get to some place or the other, irking runners in the process.
It is also extremely dangerous to have a near collision with elite runners. They are going at a speed at which it is perilous to stop suddenly. As they are extremely focused and concentrating on improving timing it is irksome and moreover unfair to them that they be robbed of a precious one second that can make a difference between a record, or, not a record. Since they are professionals, a record timing makes a huge difference to them, professionally and monetarily. To walk into the middle during the marathon is not only casual but also callous.
The authorities do a tremendous job keeping traffic off the roads, but they must take a stricter stand against this behaviour by a section of the people. The onus though lies on Mumbaikars who do not even have the patience to wait for a few hours. Hold your horses, stand patiently on the side and do not rush around amidst runners trying to get your Kodak moment. You stand in imminent danger of being run over by the African safari. And there is no insurance for that.