Siliguri: Hundreds of motor sports enthusiasts gathered to cheer the competitors as the five-day Biswa Bangla JK Tyre Himalayan Drive was given a spectacular ceremonial start here on Saturday.
The country’s only serving lady police commissioner, Chiling S Lepcha of Siliguri Police, flagged it off to the beat of a smart police band even as the ceremonial bugle echoed in this quaint hill station.
The five day rally that officially begins on Sunday morning will cover 1250 kilometres, traversing through the three countries of India, Bhutan and Nepal.
They will drive off from Siliguri early on Sunday (February 26) morning and race through the picturesque Dooars area with its lush forests teeming with wildlife and verdant tea gardens before crossing the international border to enter Bhutan.
The ride from Phuntsholing, the border trading town in Bhutan’s foothills, is considered one of the best drives in the world. The road to Paro skirts steep mountain slopes clad with pine trees before leading to the breathtakingly beautiful valley in which Paro is nestled. This first leg of the rally covers 337 kilometers.