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Wheel stunt moves off screen, courtesy Net group

Siliguri, June 1: Bike enthusiasts have got an opportunity to learn and perform what they have seen on screen — a wheelie or a stoppie, a donut or a Christ, thanks to an online community that has been teaching the art near Siliguri for quite sometime.

The adventurous motorcycling — considered to be the forte of professional stuntmen whose performance in movies and commercials mesmerises young and old alike — is being promoted and popularised here by Xkmph.com, formed by Santanu Banerjee, an engineer of Siliguri two years ago.

The online community has taken up the task of augmenting the art by providing lessons on the stunts with appropriate gears and safety measures by experts like Milan Pradhan and Rozer Joshi.

“Our community has more than 4,500 bikers with members from all states and even from Bhutan and Nepal,” said Santanu.

Under the supervision of Milan and Rozer, around 20-25 people have been learning different stunts for the past couple of months or so.

The list includes wheelie, stoppie, Christ and donuts.

“We are successfully spreading the motorcycling passion, along with awareness on safety norms and behaviour on road and group riding. We are focussing on promoting biking as a lifestyle,” said Suman Gurung, the offline moderator of Xkmph in Siliguri. “Stunt ride itself is an adventure sport. While performing it, steps should be taken to ensure the rider’s safety and the timing has to be precise.”

The riders wear helmets and elbow gears to withstand or cushion the impact of any fall from the two-wheeler. Before the training starts, the bikes are checked to ensure that it is in proper condition.

Milan hails from Sikkim and runs an eatery in Siliguri, while Rozer is a student. “Some of the best riders in the region have been selected to perform stunts and provide training. There are a lot of passionate bikers in north Bengal and Sikkim, who are enchanted by the stunts and want to learn them,” said Gurung.

The experts are keen on developing a stunt team in this part of the country. “We are planning to form a stunt team and later, grow it by adding members from cities across India,” said Milan.

Rozer said the role played by Xkmph to promote the art was praiseworthy.

“We are really happy that Xkmph has taken steps to promote motorcycling in a safe way. We have gained great knowledge of the art and perform them with all safety precautions,” he said.

“We are usually choosing thinly populated areas on the outskirts of Siliguri, where the road conditions are good to conduct the sessions,” added Rozer.

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