Indonesian embassy, Pakistani friends wish safe journey to Indonesian cyclists en route to Makkah

Zubair Qureshi

Ambassador of Indonesia Adam M Tugio on Friday bade farewell to the Indonesian cyclists Asid Kusuma Atmaja and Yunus who are on their way to Makkah (Saudi Arabia) on bicycles to perform Hajj.

The ambassador along with the staff of the embassy as well as the Pakistani friends including media persons, tour operators and executives of various dropbox agencies wished the two young Indonesian cyclists a safe and secure journey ahead. He termed their passion to face all the hardships of the roads and ordeal of a long journey to reach Saudi Arabia for Hajj highly valuable.

Prior to the farewell, while addressing a reception at the embassy, the ambassador said, “It gives me immense pleasure to announce that the visa issues of the two Indonesian cyclists have been resolved and they can now resume their road journey from Pakistan to Iran, Oman, UAE and finally Saudi Arabia.”

The ambassador struck a positive note by announcing that the entire visa process for Indonesia has been made much simpler and easier for the Pakistani tourists and they can now get it within three days. He also thanked the Pakistani media as well as the tourism industry people for their cooperation to highlight Indonesia’s rich tourism potential, its idyllic places, cuisine and culture and above all immense opportunities for the Pakistani students and businessmen, etc.

“People of Pakistan and Indonesia have many things in common such as lifestyle, cultures, traditions, values and even food and architecture. The way the two Indonesian cyclists were received in Pakistan and given coverage in the media is also proof of our close friendship,” he said.

The cyclist duo has been on the road since August 2022 and reached Pakistan earlier this month.

They in fact had taken a flight to Islamabad after bicycling across the five countries: Malaysia, Thailand, Myanmar, Singapore and Bangladesh.

In Pakistan, they were staying at the premises of the Indonesian Embassy to obtain visas for their next destinations i.e. is Oman, Iran, United Arab Emirates (UAE) and the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA). Ambassador Tugio was instrumental in getting the visas for these countries and announced that after their visas, now they can bicycle from Islamabad to Karachi as per their plan. He also thanked the KSA, UAE, Iran and Oman embassies for their support in issuing visas to the Indonesian bicyclists. Since they cover around 70-75 km daily on their bicycles they are expected to reach Karachi in the next seven to ten days. Later, the ambassador along with the guests bade farewell to them for their next journey. While displaying the flags of Indonesia and Pakistan and the countries they bicycled through, the two cyclists expressed their gratitude to the embassy and the people of Pakistan for their love and affection. Wherever we went during our stay in Islamabad, we were very greeted warmly by the people of Pakistan and we received a lot of appreciation, said they.