An avid marathoner, cyclist, social activist and adventure lover, Rituraj Vasant Karthik is on a mission to generate awareness about outdoor sports, cultural and social activities.
Through his community called Hyderabad Kites, Karthik supports 26 different communities across various interest areas — music, dance, lake restoration, running, photography, adventure sports, cycling and so on.
“It is a platform for every community and every doer. We participate in TEA (Think, Enable and Act) meets for discussions on topics like stress, addiction and how to tackle them. We believe that goals are more easily reachable when we explore our dreams together as a community. Here, every member is a leader,” says the founder of Hyderabad Kites, who reveals that the community was born out of a passion for adventure and excitement. “I suffered from shyness, reluctance, apprehension, nervousness, fear of public speaking and so on. Adventure activities helped build my self-confidence,” he shares, adding, “There is nothing better than doing what we love. I always wanted to do something different.”
However, the turning point came when he met with a major accident in 2014. “I suffered serious fractures in my ribs and leg. I lost a major chunk of leg muscle. To my surprise, I was told that I was pre-diabetic and that my leg might need amputation if it didn’t heal. That’s when I started taking care of my health very seriously. I started walking everyday despite the bleeding. I did everything I could to keep myself healthy and fit. It took me two years to get back on track and run a marathon,” recalls Karthik, who has completed 1,000 km of running in less than a year and 120 km of barefoot running too.
So, how did the name Hyderabad Kites come about? “I loved to make kites from newspapers and distribute them among my friends when I was a kid. The stronger the thread, the higher a kite can fly. I believe that the kite’s thread is like our potential skills while the kite itself represents our dreams,” explains Karthik, adding, “Every person has a unique talent and there is a need for a platform to help people pursue their passion.” Being a keen runner himself, Karthik, who recently completed 100 days of running, says he is especially proud of his fitness movement which started in 2015 to encourage people to make running a part of their lives and to run daily through 100 days....