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    Published On : Sat, Jan 23rd, 2021
    National News | By Nagpur Today Nagpur News

    No motorcycle stunts at R-Day parade this year

    Due to COVID-19 safety norms gravity-defying stunts by motorcycle-borne men, a major attraction for the crowd at Republic Day celebrations on the Rajpath, will be missing this year, while the spectator size too has been reduced to 25,000, officials said on Friday.

    Besides this, the parade of gallantry awardees and children who have earned bravery awards will also not be there at the 72nd Republic Day event, on account of social distancing, they said.

    Also, there will be no chief guest at the event this year.

    “This year’s Republic Day is very different as it is happening amid the coronavirus pandemic. Like in Independence Day, all chairs in enclosures will be placed following social distancing norms. So the crowd size has come down to 25,000 this time from around 1.25 lakh last year or some of the previous years.

    “The number of enclosures has also been halved to just 19,” said a senior official who is privy to the arrangements.

    Due to the same reason, the popular motorcycle stunts performed by army or paramilitary personnel, which draw loud cheers from the crowd every year, will not be happening this year, he said.

    “These decisions have been taken because it is not possible to maintain social distancing while performing group stunts or awardees riding a jeep together during the parade,” the official said.

    The number of mediapersons invited to the ceremonial event has also been reduced, he added.

    A total of 32 tableaux — 17 of various states and UTs, nine of ministries and six from defence arm — will roll down Rajpath. The contingents will stop at National Stadium this year instead of following the regular route all the way to the Red Fort, officials said.

    “Also, the size of marching contingents has been reduced from regular 144 to 96 so that they can maintain social distancing,” the senior official said.

    Members of the tableaux contingents from various states, ministries and government departments underwent COVID-19 test at a cultural camp in Delhi Cantonment on Friday, officials said.

    COVID-19 safety norms will be strictly in place throughout the event.

    A military band from the Bangladesh Army will also take part in the parade. This year, Bangladesh marks the 50th anniversary of its Independence.

    Tableau from a total of 17 states and UTs, including, Gujarat, Assam, Tamil Nadu, Maharashtra, Punjab, West Bengal, Uttar Pradesh, Ladakh and Delhi will be part of the parade.

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