About the Author:
Roshni Rai is an advocate, an ultra-marathon runner and a motivational speaker. She left her village Pedong in Darjeeling District of West Bengal and came to Mumbai in 2004 after a heartbreak. Rai holds an LLM (Masters in Law) from Mumbai University. She ran her first marathon during Standard Chartered Mumbai Marathon 2007, in which she severely injured her knee due to the lack of proper training. She started her marathon training under the guidance of her coach Daniel Vaz from the year 2008. Since then, she has run more than 40 races, which include 10 km races, half marathons, full marathons, ultra marathons and the Comrades Marathon of 89 km.
Rai is the founder of the Run with Roshni Foundation through which, she has been supporting underprivileged Gorkha runners from Darjeeling to run marathons in Mumbai, Hyderabad, Chennai, Shillong since the year 2012.
The ‘Pedong Express’ delivers this one straight from her heart. Her passion for Running and her commitment to the upliftment of the Gorkha community is brought out in her simple, lucid style of writing. An excellent read, till the very end.
– Daniel Vaz
Chief Executive Officer at Batliboi Ltd.
Marathon Coach at Nike Runners Club
This book is a motivating account of a young, independent woman who fought against myriads of challenges and emerged a shining star. The book weaves an engaging insight on how simple student of Law started running marathon after marathon and how she strives to empower Indian Gorkhas through the ‘Run with Roshni’ Campaign. This enthralling composition by the runner herself is a product of historical references, emotions, struggles and challenges.
– Dr. Binod Pradhan
Through her passion of running, Roshni tries spreading the message of tolerance and acceptance. She is optimistic that her work will bear fruits one day, and Gorkhas will be accepted as a part of mainstream India.
This book, ‘From the Mountain to the Ocean – Run with Roshni’ is an inspiring story about her journey from the Pedong to Mumbai. It is about her struggle, how she started running Marathons and about her project Run with Roshni. I urge everyone to read this book and support Roshni in her mission.
– Sunil Shetty
Ultramarathon Runner and Limca Book Record Holder
‘From the Mountain to the Ocean – Run with Roshni’ is a guide and inspiration to each person trying to overcome difficulties and to make the best of their life. An Olympic medal, Roshni’s dream for the community, is not far for such inspired, genetically strong Gorkhas. This book is impactful and highly inspirational reading.
– Satish Gujran
Ultramarathon Runner and Six times Comrades Marathon (89km) Finisher
On my run ‘around the world’, I encountered many wonderful and kind people while running through India. But deep down I also uncovered a troubled, partisan country. I experienced a much-divided country burdened by many complicated social and divisive issues. For many oppressed people, it would probably be easier to live their lives under the radar, just get on with their daily chores, and to accept the hand that life has dealt them. It can be challenging, even dangerous for a visionary to speak out in defence of the oppressed, or even on behalf of those on the margins of our society.
It is exceptionally brave, and some may even say foolhardy for a woman to do so. Aung San Suu Kyi, the Burmese opposition leader, springs to mind. Peer reassurance and cultural expectations of what a person should be, determine how they should interact or conform within a community. Others, even bona fide people can easily be brainwashed or prejudiced. Some people have an irresistible urge to box package and label what other people or ethnic communities should be, or how they should behave.
Then some people are racist by choice, others are racist through ignorance, through their upbringing. Unable to think for themselves, they become radicalized for their small town life experiences may be limited and they may know no better. However for the oppressed; any blinkered reasoning of the oppressor makes no difference. Those are just words. Even small seemingly insignificant judgments and actions can have a devastating effect on their wellbeing. The oppressed continue to remain marginalized, on the edge of our society.
Enter-Roshni Rai; a woman of towering principles who bravely speaks out for a better and more tolerant India. Her long and never ending message is for enlightenment, a non-discriminatory understanding of the roots of her Gorkha From the Mountain to the Ocean identity and heritage. Roshni Rai’s most powerful tools are her feet and her pen. She uses them skillfully. These are her most powerful weapons along with her weapons of peace, compassion, understanding, and tolerance.
When I became aware of this brave, proud-to-be Indian woman, the quality that was most striking was her insatiable passion for justice and her unrelenting struggle for the acceptance of her community – the Gorkhas – as Indian. She perseveres through all these obstacles by running marathons around the world, while at the same time remaining optimistic throughout, always smiling and enlightening everyone she meets about the Gorkha Identity Crisis.
Roshni’s seemingly impossible struggle to change a prejudiced world through vocal periphery is an insurmountable hurdle of seeking understanding and compassion for her people. Her mission is to change the mindset of rest-of India about Gorkhas. I reached out to hear her amazing story; I am proud to call this revolutionary athlete my friend. ‘Nothing is impossible. Impossible just takes longer’ – this seems to be Roshni’s philosophy.
This book ‘From the Mountain to the Ocean- Run with Roshni’ is Roshni Rai’s inspiring story, about how she started running marathons and about her project ‘Run with Roshni’. A project she started in 2012 through which she is supporting underprivileged but very talented young Gorkha Runners from Darjeeling to run marathons in different cities of India by raising funds. She dreams of empowering Gorkha Runners to win Olympic Marathon for India. All Indians should come forward to support her in this mission.
Ultra marathoner from Ireland, Tony Mangan holds the current world record for a 48-hour indoor track race – 426.178 km. He also has a world record for the greatest distance travelled on a treadmill in 48 hours – 405.22 km. Between the years 2010 and 2014, he has run 50,000 km around the world for Aware, a charity helping to defeat depression, on 27 October 2014. In all, he ran across 41 countries and five continents, averaging 43.3 km per day.