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The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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Players to help curb stunt biking

Jan. 7: The transport department is going the extra mile to rein in over-speeding and stunt biking by youths that have emerged as major concerns for traffic police.

The department will engage two players —cricketer Abu Nechim Ahmed and boxer Swadesh Ranjan Buragohain for an awareness campaign to be launched soon. The two sportsmen will appeal to the youths to desist from stunt biking, wear helmets and abide by speed limits in order to avoid accidents.

The district transport officer (licence), Gautam Das, told this correspondent that the awareness campaign was being planned keeping in mind an increase in incidents of stunt-biking and the problem to rein in errant bikers.

“Many youths, particularly college-going boys, violate speed limits and do stunts on bikes that can be fatal for them as well as others on the streets. The traffic cops are always strict against those violating the rules and now we want to engage two young players to make an appeal to the youths not to resort to dangerous acts on the streets,” Das said.

The department has prepared a model car that will be used to raise awareness on safe driving and urge people to abide by traffic rules.

Stunt biking has emerged as a cause of concern for traffic police personnel as many youths ride motorcycles at 80km to 90km an hour though the speed limit within the city is 40kmph.

Ten young bikers were caught and their motorcycles seized in November while they were doing stunts on the busy GS Road. Traffic constables manning the road struggled for more than half-an-hour to catch them — all aged between 18 and 22 years. Sources said the department would be stricter against stunt bikers and take steps like cancellation of driving licences of those found doing the stunts.

Das said the department would prepare audio-visual clippings involving the two players and it would be aired through TV channels.

Hoardings and banners are also likely to be put up at different parts of the city in which the two players will be seen urging the youths to wear helmets and abide by the speed limit. “We will try to make sure that the audio-visual clippings are played in the channels five to six times a day. As the two players have done us proud in sport and are popular among the youths, we hope that their appeal will make a difference,” Das said.

Ahmed has played in the Sachin Tendulkar-led Mumbai Indians in the IPL. He plays for Assam in Ranji trophy. Buragohain had performed well in junior national boxing last year.

The two players were felicitated today, the concluding day of 24th Road Safety Week being observed mainly by the transport department and Guwahati traffic police.

Das said a special vehicle would visit school campuses in the city for awareness programmes round the year.