Ten members of an elite group of Indian Army motorcycle enthusiasts are reaching the end of a Royal Enfield motorcycling expedition designed to pay homage to the soldiers lost in wars in Eurasia and West Asia nations.
The 10-member team, christened the “Lightning Bulleteers,” started on August 23, 2010 in New Delhi, India and embarked on a 12,000-kilometer journey that would take 42 days to complete.
The motorbike riders are winding down their trip, set to arrive back in New Delhi on September 28 after traveling to Greece, Turkey, Italy, France and the United Kingdom.
The idea of the motorcycle journey was to place mementoes at international war memorials in memory of those who lost their lives fighting in the First (WWI) and Second World War (WWII).
The “Lightning Bulleteers” are comprised of Indian Army members, led by Colonel VKS Tomar, accompanied by five senior male Army officers, two female cadres and three members of various ranks.
The team is riding single-cylinder 500cc Royal Enfields (India’s national motorcycle brand), which have been modified for the demanding, often torturous journey.
The motorcyclists have visited a number of significant sites to pay their respects, from the Helles War Memorial and Twelve Tree Copse Memorials-where 1,730 Indian Army soldiers lost their lives in the Gallipoli campaign of 1915-to Phaleron War cemetery in Greece, where more than 200 men of the British Indian Army were slain in the Second World War.
The Royal Enfield-mounted bikers also visited the New Glasgow War Memorial, the Hollybrook Memorial, the Cenotaph and the Edinburgh castle in the United Kingdom.
In addition to honoring the dead, the Indian Army expedition was aimed at spreading the message of freedom and peace while also strengthening bonds with the countries visited. The journey was also a campaign of adventure to promote good will, India, and motorcycles.