The Evolution of Indian Biking Culture


THE FAT BIKER by Rohit Paradkar

The biking culture in India is gaining popularity at an unprecdented pace.

Biking in India has had a scattered past. I’m sure your uncles or elder cousins would have told you times without number about their glorious days with two stroke machinery like the Shaolin/Shogun duo from TVS or the army of RXes from Yamaha or the legendary RD350 which till date is a performance yardstick for many a enthusiast. And then suddenly the slump began. Companies like Hero Honda gave birth to the likes of the CD100. These are the kind of machines that every performance freak would be warned about by his senior comrades for the sheer way in which these fuel efficient crusaders killed the performance bikes of that era. But in the past few years, things have changed. These commuter bikes have learnt how to co-exist with the power mongers, as the premium segment is showing a steady growth. I’m sure the fact isn’t obscured from you either, so why am I harping on the same subject again?

Well, it’s the sheer excitement that I can’t resist talking about. What makes today’s times significant from the biker’s point of view is – we are witnessing the rebirth of Indian motorcycling. The new age premium bikes are evolving with better engines and global technology is filtering down to us, giving birth to bikes which are increasingly performance oriented. Motorsport, sport riding, stunting – it is all finally coming of age in the country now. Riding to Leh is no more an achievement but a ritual that each and every biker wishes to perform. The concept of track days is now gaining popularity and even owners of imported bikes, who are generally termed as poseurs, are now making an effort to take their multi-cylinder beasts to the track! And when they are not doing that, they are busy riding with other makes and sizes of bikes, making the philosophy of Sunday-morning-rides even more popular. Step out of your house, and you’ll see a number of biking groups gathering outside hangouts or sipping chai atop a closeby hill station or just having a blast riding in a formation around the ghat sections across India. It’s all so exciting! Finally, the change is coming through, bike-owners are slowly transitioning into real ‘bikers’ – understanding the true philosophy of biking and fueling the new motorcycling revolution in India. Tomorrow when our bodies decompose in the graveyards, our biker souls will be happy and content, for being a vital part of the generation that brought about the biking rebirth! Keep riding guys; we have a long way to go.


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