This Republic Day, brace yourselves for a new biker contingent which will be a part of the grand national parade which marches down Rajpath, India’s ceremonial boulevard. These bikers are gearing up to stun the country with their breathtaking stunts and acrobatics.
Usually, a troupe of biking daredevils end the parade every year with an impressive display of stunts, but this year, an all-women biker contingent from the Border Security Force (BSF) will do the honours.
As per tradition, the parade is concluded by either the BSF or Army contingent of men daredevils, on an alternative basis.
As it was the BSF’s turn this year, the country’s largest border guarding force decided to do something different.
Christened ‘Seema Bhavani’ or Border Bravehearts, the 113-member squad includes women aged between 25-30 years, who have been carefully chosen from different combat ranks of the force for the squad.
Led by Sub-Inspector Stanzin Noryang, a 28-year-old from Ladakh, the team comprises a diverse mix of bold and daring women from almost all the states in the country. While Punjab leads with 20 participants, the states of West Bengal, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra and Uttar Pradesh closely follow with 15, 10, 9, and 8 members, respectively.
There are 7 members each from Assam and Bihar, 6 from Odisha, 5 members each from Rajasthan, Manipur and Gujarat, and 3 from Jammu & Kashmir and Chhattisgarh each.
There are 2 participants each from Kerala, Karnataka, Uttarakhand and Delhi, and lastly 1 member from Meghalaya and Himachal Pradesh each. As many as 15 of these members are married, while some are even mothers.
Interestingly, before being selected for the parade, most of the women didn’t even know how to cycle. This is also true for the captain of the squad! While some never had the opportunity, others were fearful. However, each of these women courageously fought their fears and took up the challenge like a boss!
Trained under the guidance of ‘special’ BSF instructors, these women were part of a rigorous training regime that would begin at 8:00 am in the morning and last till 1:00 pm every day. This would then be followed by a post-noon session that would start at 3:30 pm and go on until 5:30 pm. They also followed a strict fitness and regulated diet regime which helped them progress.
Starting from learning how to balance themselves on a bike, to dexterously performing expert stunts, these women have proved that no fear is an obstacle if one is determined enough to overcome it.
During the training period, some of them even injured themselves, but that didn’t break their resilience or spirit.
The whole idea of bringing women into the scene can be attributed to BSF Director General KK Sharma, who wanted to replace the men daredevils, with women bikers.
The team will be performing different types of stunts, which will include some classic formations like ‘Pyramid,’ ‘Fish Riding’, ‘Shaktiman,’ ‘Bull Fighting,’ and ‘Seema Prahari.’
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Although women contingents from all the three defence forces had marched through the ceremonial boulevard in 2015, this will be the first time that the country will witness women bikers riding 350cc Royal Enfield Bullet motorbikes on January 26.
The event will be attended by President Ram Nath Kovind, Prime Minister Narendra Modi and 10 leaders of ASEAN countries, who will be the guests of honour for the country’s 69th Republic Day.