India’s military might, cultural diversity and varied unique initiatives will be showcased as President Ram Nath Kovind leads the nation on Wednesday in celebrating the 73rd Republic Day.
The celebrations this year are special as India is in the 75th year of Independence — being celebrated as ‘Azadi ka Amrit Mahotsav’.
To mark the occasion, the ministry of defence has conceptualised a series of new events during the parade on Rajpath, and the ‘Beating the Retreat’ ceremony at Vijay Chowk on Saturday.
The government had said that the Republic Day celebrations will now be celebrated for a week — between January 23 and 30 — every year.
The celebrations now start on January 23, the birth anniversary of great freedom fighter Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose and end on January 30 — observed as Martyrs’ Day.
According to the ministry of defence, for the first time, an Indian Air Force will show grand flypast by 75 aircraft or helicopters.
A drone show by 1,000 indigenously developed drones has been planned for the ‘Beating the Retreat’ ceremony, along with projection mapping will be shown for the first time.
In another first, 480 dancers will perform during the cultural programme at the parade have been selected through a nationwide Vande Bharatam dance competition.
The main parade will also see the launch of ‘Shaheedon Ko Shat Shat Naman’ programme by the National Cadet and a display of ten scrolls each of 75 metres prepared during the ‘Kala Kumbh’ event and installation of 10 large LED screens for a better viewing experience of spectators.
The parade at Rajpath will start at 10:30 am, instead of 10 am, to provide better visibility to the parade and flypast.
Special arrangements have been made keeping in view the current COVID-19 situation. The number of seats for spectators has been significantly reduced and people are being encouraged to register online to witness the live celebrations.
“Only double vaccinated adults/one dose vaccinated children of 15 years and above will be allowed entry at the parade. Children below 15 years of age will not be permitted,” an official statement reads.