India on Tuesday showcased its military prowess and achievements in different fields, state-of-the-art defence, diverse cultural and social traditions and the government’s emphasis on self-reliance and indigenisation at Rajpath on the country’s 67th Republic Day.
One of the highlights of the colorful parade was the 76-member French army contingent which became the first foreign troop since 1950 to march down the Rajpath. The contingent, which also had nearly 50 musicians, was led by Lt Col Paul Bury of the 35th Infantry Regiment, one of the oldest active regiments of France.
Tableaux from 17 states and six Union Territories were also the part of the parade. And for the first time, a tableau by ex-servicemen took part in the parade where Indian Army veterans showcased their role in building the nation.
Francois Hollande, the guest of honour for the Republic Day parade this year, is the fifth French president to be the chief guest over the decades.
HT brings you the live updates of the Republic Day celebrations across India.
11:44 am The Trishul formation by three SU-30 MK
11:40 AM D are Devils take charge, school contingents put up folk dances
11: 00 am After displaying India’s military might, the parade saw tableau's from different states
10: 20 am As the celebrations for India’s 67th republic day began, India showcased its military might with the Brahmos missile system on display.
The Akash Weapon System of 27 air defence regiment led by Major Neha Singh also participated in the parade. This is the first indigenously developed air defence system capable of firing short range surface to air missile. The regiment had taken part in the 1965 and 1971 India-Pakistan war, Operation Rakshak-II, Operation Sahayata
Here is a close up of the French contingent marching in the parade: The 35th Infantry Regiment, France is being led by Lieutenant Colonel Paul Bury and consists of 75 soldiers. Raised in 1604, it took part in various campaigns and won many laurels for itself.
MI-17 helicopters displayed at the parade
Parade Commander Lt gen Rajan Ravindran, who has been in service for 37 years, is leading this year Republic Day celebrations. MI-17 helicopters were displayed at the parade before winners of Param Vir Chakra and Ashok Chakra and any other gallantry awards march down the Rajpath.
Prez, Hollande, Modi arrive at Rajpath, celebrations begin
9:40 am The celebrations began with Prime Minister Narendra Modi driving to the Amar Jawan Jyoti memorial to the Unknown Soldier at India Gate and laying a wreath in honour of the countless Indian soldiers who have died in battles since World War I.
Modi then drove up to the saluting base to receive President Pranab Mukherjee and President Francois Hollande.
The President’s Bodyguard presented the national salute, the tricolour was unfurled and the national anthem was played to set the tone for a rather poignant moment - the posthumous presentation of the Ashok Chakra, the country’s highest gallantry award in peacetime. It was presented this year to the widow of Lance Naik Mohan Nath Goswami of the Parachute Regiment, who laid down his life while fighting terrorists in the Kashmir Valley last Septmeber.
Vice President Hamid Ansari, the three service chiefs, Congress president Sonia Gandhi, cabinet ministers, a host of dignitaries and a group of women achievers seated in a special enclosure were on hand to witness the hour-and-half long parade.
Meanwhile, the area around Central Delhi was turned into virtual fortress in view of intelligence inputs that terror groups may target some important installations in the city.
9:00 AM Rosaiah unfurls the tricolour at the Marina beach
Tamil Nadu celebrated the 67th Republic Day with patriotic fervour on Tuesday, with Governor K. Rosaiah unfurling the tricolour at the Marina beach, while a 100 feet tall national f lag was hoisted by BJP leader Ashish Shelar in Mumbai .
Renowned Sand Artist Sudarsan Pattnaik too created a sand art on the occasion of India’s 67th Republic Day today.
8: 15 am Modi greets nation on Republic Day as Delhi turns into a fortress
Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Tuesday extended Republic Day greetings and paid tributes to those “great personalities” who framed India’s Constitution.
Tributes to all great personalities who framed our Constitution. I salute Dr. Ambedkar for his efforts as Chairman of Drafting Committee.— Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) January 26, 2016
Republic Day greetings to all my fellow Indians. सभी देशवासियों को गणतंत्र दिवस की शुभकामनाएं...जय हिन्द— Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) January 26, 2016
Meanwhile, BJP President Amit Shah hoisted the national flag at party headquarters in Delhi
Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh too was seen hoisting the national flag at his residence in Delhi
8:00 am Military might, achievements & projects on R’day show
India’s military prowess and achievements in different fields, state-of-the-art defence, diverse cultural and social traditions and the government’s emphasis on self-reliance and indigenisation will be showcased at Rajpath on the country’s 67th Republic Day .
Francois Hollande, the President of France, will be the Chief Guest of the parade.
French Army contingent to march on Rajpath for the first time ever
For the first time in the history of Republic Day parades, a 76-member French Army contingent led by a French military band comprising 48 musicians, will march on Rajpath and present a ceremonial salute to the President of India.
Army dogs to take part
After a gap of 26 years, an Army dog squad drawn from the Remount Veterinary Corps (RVC) will also take part, along with their handlers. ( More details can be read here)
Sticking to the 66-year-old tradition of the Republic Day celebrations, the colourful BSF Camel Regiment consisting of 56 camels led by Deputy Commandant Kuldeep J Choudhary will also march on the Rajpath.
For the first time, the parade will see an ex-servicemen tableau where Army veterans will showcase their role in nation building.
The Indian Army’s missile firing capability T-90 “Bhishma” tank, Infantry Combat Vehicle BMP II (Sarath), Mobile Autonomous Launcher of the BrahMos Missile System, Akash Weapon System, Smerch Launcher Vehicles and Integrated Communication Electronic Warfare System (ICEWS) will be the main draw in the mechanised columns.
An Indian Air Force tableau, with the theme “Humanitarian Assistance and Disaster Relief Operations by IAF: In Service of the Nation and Beyond” will showcase models of C-17 Globemaster, C-130 Hercules and MI-17V5 aircraft, emphasising its use in the Force’s rescue and relief operations in Uttarakhand, Jammu and Kashmir, Yemen and Nepal.
The Indian Navy’s tableau will have the theme “Empowering India through Maritime security and Indigenisation” displaying flight deck operations on the new aircraft carrier “Vikrant”, under construction at the Kochi Shipyard, and the indigenously constructed submarine “Kalvari” by Mazagaon Dock, Mumbai, having a “Made in India” tag on them.
Parade will begin at India Gate
The parade ceremony will commence at the Amar Jawan Jyoti at India Gate where Prime Minister Narendra Modi will lead the nation in paying homage to martyrs by laying a wreath.
7:30 am Google on Tuesday celebrated India’s Republic Day with a doodle of a tableau of camels carrying band members. The colourful doodle showed men on top of elaborately decorated camels. Unlike many of Google’s previous doodles, this doodle does not have any animation.
7:00 am Capital under heavy security, one policeman at every 20 metres
A multi-layer security blanket has been thrown around the national capital with anti-aircraft guns and LMGs positioned at vantage points in view of intelligence inputs that terror groups may target some important installations in the national capital.
Gunners have been given clear instructions to bring down any aerial object flying without permission. A ‘NOTAM’ (Notice to Airmen) has been declared from 10.35 AM to 12.15 PM during which no flights will land or take off at the Indira Gandhi International Airport. ( Read more here )