Jaipur, Feb 14(ANI): More than 100 vintage cars took part in the 12th Vintage and Classic cars rally in Jaipur, and outshining them all was the 1968 white Mercedes belonging to the late Gayatri Devi.
Now owned by the event organizer Sudhir Kasliwal, the 1968 Mercedes remained the centre of attraction for its immaculate condition and its association with the erstwhile Queen of Jaipur, Gayatri Devi, who was respectfully called Rajmata, or Queen Mother.
The 12th Vintage and Classic Cars rally, which is being organised by the Rajputana Automotive Sports Car Club (RASCC) in association with the Rajasthan Tourism Department, has been dedicated to the late Rajmata because of her fondness for car rallies.
"This car (1968 Mercedes) belongs to Rajmata Gayatri Devi and she had got it from Spain. The speciality of this car is that it is a 1968 model automatic car. It has dual carburettors and it is a powerful car. It is called the 223S automatic," said Hamid Gahani, the caretaker of the car.
The organizers of the event also paid homage to the Rajmata by naming the 36-inch-high 24-carat gold-coated trophy as Rajmata Gayatri Devi Memorial Cup.
The trophy will be presented to the winner of the Concours d'Elegance-Classic category in the rally.
The car rally is organized annually to preserve the heritage of the country. This year the rally features Mercedes models ranging from 1936 to 1971, 14 different classic Jaguars, Cadillac, Daimler, Austin, Chrysler, Studebaker, Humber, Erskine, Ford Mustang and a 1938 model Fiat.
"The biggest advantage of organizing this vintage car rally is that the cars which were kept in the junkyard or left covered and unused in people's garages, are now being restored through this event. They are now taking part in this rally in large numbers," said Sudhir Kasliwal, vice-president of Rajputana Automotive Sports Car Club.
Kasliwal further said that this event has prompted people in Jaipur to preserve their old cars and people have started showing interest in restoring this lost heritage of India. (ANI)