Socially-aware people have taken up various forms of protests ranging from hunger strikes to long marches with the hope of promoting their causes.
Now, Mani Manithan from Tamil Nadu, has added his own form of peaceful protest to the list, with the hope of eradicating violence. He has been walking backwards for 25 years, in a bid to bring about world peace.
"I opted to only travel in reverse in 1989 after a string of violent acts in my home country shocked me into action. To condemn such incidents I have been walking backwards for 25 years. My only agenda is world peace," Your Daily Small Talk quoted him as saying.
Now, after 25 years, Manithan says he is accustomed to walking backwards that this unusual routine does not interfere with his daily life, as he has perfected the art of walking backwards up stairs, across roads and even while using the public transport.
In fact, he insists he does not does not even remember how to walk forward. "Walking normally is more of a challenge – my mind has forgotten how to do it," Manithan, a mobile phone salesman, said. "I have become very comfortable walking like this."
When Your Daily Small Talk team disbelievingly asked how he manages to get off the toilet without taking a step forward, he answered, "I live in India. I do not use a toilet... I squat over a shallow hole. When I am done, I pivot on my left leg, then walk away from the shallow hole, backwards."
One of his very first acts after taking his vow was to walk backwards for 300 miles, naked, all the way from his village to Chennai city, during which he noticed senseless violence everywhere. He even admitted to getting "prison raped a lot".
Hailing from the Agraharam village of Vellore district in Tamil Nadu, Manithan has broken many world records since he first started walking backwards on 14 June 1989 and despite enjoying little success in his bid to achieve world peace so far, he is adamant about keeping up with this endeavour until violence is eradicated from the world.
"My life has been full of struggles, sacrifice, achievements and protest so I have no issue continuing my backward walking until we achieve world peace," he said.