Deepa Malik: Will on wheels

“Wow” was the first thing that Deepa Malik exclaimed when she heard the concept that 6 students of Sathyabama University proposed, on her visit to their campus for the Inspiring Icon Awards ceremony. This later on became an abbreviation for the mission - ‘Will on Wheels’, an initiative to spread awareness about ability beyond disability for the differently-abled. Who knew then that this very mission would get Deepa Malik her 4th Limca record?

It all started after Deepa Malik’s motivational lecture at Sathyabama University, where she encouraged students to think outside the box, and as future engineers and creators, develop technology that would help make life simpler for paraplegics. On her second visit on Independence Day, however, she was pleasantly surprised because some students already had a concept and plan ready for a project- they wanted to develop a hand- driven car, and they wanted Deepa to be their cause ambassador. That was the only sign that the driving enthusiast needed. “I gave them my Duster to work with because these young minds need to be fuelled otherwise the fire will die out,” Deepa remarks.

Apart from the go-ahead signal from Deepa, the students were ready with the entire plan. “Initially when we proposed the concept as part of our final year project, we thought she would take a regular trial for the modified car around the campus, but ma’am had bigger plans. She wanted to do a pan-India drive in it,” Bikash Jyoti Biswas, student member of the project, reminisces with the shock still evident on his face.