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Flying carnival begins today

Jorhat, Jan. 31: Twenty-five paramotor pilots from various part of the country have arrived in Sivasagar to participate in the country’s biggest flying carnival starting tomorrow at the Doh Pathar, about 1.5km from NH 37 on the Sivasagar-Disangmukh Road.

The two-day event, Sivasagar Flying Carnival, has been organised by the Cross-Country Flying Club in association with the Assam Tourism Development Corporation and the Sivasagar district administration.

The general secretary of the club, Rajiv Hazarika, said the stage was all set for the event and the pilots have been practising for the final event. “We have pilots from Pune, Bangalore, Aurangabad, Ahmedabad, Delhi, Shillong and Guwahati. These pilots are the best in the country and would show some spectacular moves in the two days,” he said.

He said this would be the biggest such carnival in the country and a large crowd was expected to arrive for the event. Such an event was held at Aurangabad in Maharashtra for the first time in 2011 where 11 pilots had taken part.

“Arunachal Pradesh governor Nirbhay Sharma will be the chief guest at the inaugural session, which will begin at 8.50am. He will arrive at the venue in a helicopter,” Hazarika said.

Paramotoring or powered paragliding is the cheapest form of flying and can be done in a football field. A motor is attached to a flexible wing and in low wind conditions this sport can be quite a spectacle. In many countries, including the US, powered paragliding is minimally regulated and requires no licence. The ability to fly both low and slow safely, the “open” feel, the minimal equipment and maintenance costs, and the portability are claimed to be the greatest merits of this sport.

Hazarika said the visitors would also be allowed to take joy rides on the two-seater paramotor during the festival days. “I can assure the visitors that it would be a lifetime experience to have a bird’s eye view of the ground below,” he said.

There would also be a music festival on the closing day with various artistes confirming their participation. Apart from this, a trap-shooting event would also be held during the carnival.

The organisers have also made arrangement for an exhibition of aero models where remote-controlled aircraft and helicopters will be on display. These models have already arrived from various parts of the country.

The Cross-Country Flying Club was opened in Sivasagar in 2013 and it has 10 core group members and 25 others. The club has two paramotors.

Hazarika said depending on the success of the two-day carnival, there were plans to make it an annual event, which would be a big tourist attraction.