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Mumbai, Maharashtra, India

A Smart City is one which has Smart Citizens, and these are health conscious and follow a fit lifestyle – and Thane, as one of the fastest growing urban conglomerations in India, put its ‘health consciousness’ on display, with the large participation in the Hiranandani Thane Half Marathon 2016. The event, which was flagged off by Niranjan Hiranandani, MD, Hiranandani Constructions, was held at Hiranandani Estate, Thane on 14 February 2016, under the aegis of Athletics Federation of India.

Lok Sabha MP from Thane Rajan Vichare and the Vice Chairman & Managing Director and CEO of Bayer Crop Science Ltd Richard van der Merwe were present at the event. “Participating in the Hiranandani Thane Half Marathon was not about winning or losing, it was about the passion and effort one would put into a fit and healthy lifestyle,” said Niranjan Hiranandani. The event showcased the aspect of being fit and healthy, and from that perspective, promote community living; the community is made up of residents and the activities that bring them together, he added.

This was the fourth edition of the Hiranandani Thane Half Marathon (HTHM), which was flagged off on February 14, 2016 from Hiranandani Estate, Thane, had three categories in this edition: Half Marathon – 21.097 km, Green Run – 10 km and Fun Run – 4 km.

The amount collected through registrations during the last three marathons has been donated to charitable institutions like Ruhi (associated with Tata Memorial Hospital), Jaipur Foot, Mumbai Mobile Creches, Concern India, Oxfam and Buniyaad.

“This year, the net amount collected through registrations will be utilized in building sanitation facilities in and around Thane area under the aegis of the Thane Municipal Corporation,” said Niranjan Hiranandani.

From this year the race also encourages runners to raise charity for a particular cause through charity raising platform ‘’. The cause for this year was the drought-hit farmers of Maharashtra. Participants were able to donate any amount towards this cause using ‘’. The net amount collected through this platform will be donated to an NGO working for this cause.

“Hiranandani Thane Half Marathon 2016 was an initiative to awaken residents of Thane about the importance of maintaining their health and lifestyle. With busy schedules, work pressure and hectic lifestyles, we see that citizens tend to neglect their health. The ‘Hiranandani Thane Half Marathon 2016’, for actual participants as also the spectators who cheered the runners, promoted a healthy life for residents,” said Niranjan Hiranandani.

The event showcased being fit and healthy, and from that perspective, sought to promote sports-related activities at the project. “At Hiranandani Estate, Thane, we have created ‘community living’. It goes beyond the aspect of home owners merely being neighbours,” said Niranjan Hiranandani. “It is being part of something larger – a community comprising residents of a township who will share a very special relationship with being fit, with each other and with nature. I co-relate community living with being close to nature. At the integrated townships we have created, be it Hiranandani Gardens in Powai or Hiranandani Meadows in Thane, the focus is on creating living spaces amidst greenery, and not merely include greenery in living spaces. The same has been replicated in Hiranandani Estate, Thane,” he added. “It is a very different lifestyle which will be enjoyed by residents who will live within the community, and share the experience called life – much like the experience of participating in the Hiranandani Thane Half Marathon 2016,” he said.

More than just health consciousness, the event also brings to the forefront the aspect of healthy living for not just Thaneites but for all residents of the Mumbai Metropolitan Region (MMR). “Running solo or running in a group, all that matters is being healthy. I hope for all participants, this year’s HTHM 2016 was a race well run,” concluded Niranjan Hiranandani.

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