Legendary marathoner Pat Farmer (53), a former Australian Parliamentary Secretary and MP from Sydney, reached the city beautiful Chandigarh after starting his run from Ambala. This run is a part of his 4000-km ‘Spirit of India’ run with wife Tania Farmer and is supported jointly by the union ministries of external affairs and tourism and the state tourism departments.
Farmer has already many achievements that include a multiple world record for endurance running. He had also ran from the North Pole to the South Pole, Australia, New Zealand, Vietnam, the Middle East and North America.
Pat and his team were given a rousing welcome by senior sports department officials and Bhupesh Chaudhary, Director, Sports UT at the city’s open hand entry from Zirakpur Chandigarh barrier. The legendary Milkha Singh, could not make it to the event as he was out of town.
Briefing media persons at the UT Secretariat, UT Home Secretary Anurag Agarwal had earlier said, “It is a proud moment for us that Pat, who started his run from Ambala on the March 17 morning, will be running in Chandigarh as part of this 4000-km ‘Spirit of India’ run.” Pat ran across the city with his team moving right from Zirakpur towards Tribune Chowk, Transport Chowk, Mahatama Gandhi Institute, Golf Club, Punjab Raj Bhawan, before concluding it at the UT guest house.
Later, Farmer told The Sunday Guardian, “I am here to generate awareness for healthy life, encouraging tourism and to promote relations between Indian and Australia and I hope my endevour falls fruitful.”
While speaking about his run and visit in India, Pat said, “Besides cementing relationships between the countries, I am here to support few causes and charities. We will raise charity for girl child in India. I had been waiting long to be here in the City Beautiful.” Pat commenced his run on the 26th of January to celebrate India’s Republic Day and Australia Day. During his halt in Chandigarh, Farmer met the Governor.
Pat will cover 4000km, from Kanya Kumari to Kashmir, in 60 days. During his 20-year running career Pat productively raised millions of dollars for laudable causes.