MP, actor get behind wheels for India at ASEAN car rally
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A parliamentarian, an actor and a Limca book record holder in adventure sports comprise a diverse pack of individuals who India's flagbearers in the second ASEAN-India Car Rally.
The leader of Team India is Tarun Vijay, who besides being a BJP MP, is also a travel enthusiast.
In his career, Vijay has juggled a lot of things with ease.
He is an author, social worker, freelance journalist, and a parliamentarian.
Vijay, who is participating for the first time in the rally, has high expectations.
"We have a 1000 years old cultural relation.
This will open our way to economic and knowledge based relationship and more Indians will start looking towards east then towards west.
This is going to create a lot of awareness, especially in countries which were once colonised and were always looking towards the west," Vijay said.
"This will change the complete framework of our relationship with eastern countries, This rally is an adrenaline, giving strength to our ties with ASEAN.
more connectivity, more prosperity, more happiness for the people," added Vijay, a former editor of the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) weekly Panchajanya.
Vijay's co-driver in car number 8 is Deputy Secretary Formula 1 Indian Grand Prix, Ejji K Umamhaesh.
Ejji, as he is popularly known as, loves fast cars and was a speed racer in his younger days.
He had also participated in the first rally from India to Indonesia.
In January 2007, he was the only Indian on the Budapest-Bamako Car Rally, a Trans-Europe and Trans-Africa rally from Hungary through Austria, Italy, France, Spain, Morocco, Western Sahara, Mauritania and Mali.
"I had earlier participated in the ASEAN Car rally in 2004, when it ran from Guwahati to Batam (Indonesia) and it is an amazing experience," said Ejji, who in 2011 drove 8000km in just 20 days to rarely visited historical, cultural and anthropological sites in India.