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Home / India News / Women power in Republic Day parade: From Army, Navy contingents to daredevils

Women power in Republic Day parade: From Army, Navy contingents to daredevils

Contingents of the Navy, India Army Service Corps and a unit of Corps of Signals (transportable satellite terminal) will all be led by women officers.

india Updated: Jan 26, 2019 10:42 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times
Lieutenant Bhavana Kasturi leads all-male Army Service Corps (ASC) contingent during the full dress rehearsal for the Republic Day Parade at Rajpath in New Delhi, Wednesday, Jan 23, 2019. Kasturi will be the first-ever lady officer to lead an all-male contingent in the Republic Day parade.
Lieutenant Bhavana Kasturi leads all-male Army Service Corps (ASC) contingent during the full dress rehearsal for the Republic Day Parade at Rajpath in New Delhi, Wednesday, Jan 23, 2019. Kasturi will be the first-ever lady officer to lead an all-male contingent in the Republic Day parade.(PTI)

On India’s 70th Republic Day parade, women power will be on display at Rajpath, with several Navy and Army contingents being led by them. A woman officer will also exhibit bike stunts on Rajpath as part of the daredevil team.

“This Republic Day parade will be an amazing display of ‘Nari Shakti’ (women power), as many contingents will be led by women, besides an all-women contingent of the Assam Rifles,” Maj Gen Rajpal Punia, Chief of Staff, HQ Delhi Area said, reports PTI.

Contingents of the Navy, India Army Service Corps and a unit of Corps of Signals (transportable satellite terminal) will all be led by women officers.

“Seeing the level of women’s involvement in this year’s parade, with all-women Assam Rifles contingent, and other contingent leaders, it is the largest participation of women in the parade.” The all-women Assam Rifles contingent will create a history this year by participating for the first time in a Republic Day parade.

Maj Khushboo Kanwar, 30, and mother of a child, who will lead a contingent of the Assam Rifles, the oldest paramilitary force in the country, was brimming with pride.

“Leading an all-women contingent of the Assam Rifles is a matter of great honour and pride for me. We have practiced very hard...I am a daughter of a bus conductor from Rajasthan and if I can accomplish this, then any girl can fulfil her dream,” she told PTI on the sidelines of the media interaction.

Capt Shikha Surabhi from the Corps of Signals will perform bike stunts alongside her male teammates as part of daredevils, a major attraction every Republic Day.

“I am the first woman to be part of daredevils segment of the parade. It took a lot of practice to perfect the stunts. But I am proud of this accomplishment. Women can do anything,” said the 28-year-old officer who hails from Jharkhand’s Hazaribagh, according to PTI.

“I will perform a standing salute on a bike,” she said.

Lt Ambika Sudhakaran, who will lead a marching naval contingent of 144 young sailors said, “Men and women are marching shoulder-to-shoulder to serve the nation.” For the first time, a lady officer,Lt Bhavana Kasturi will lead a contingent of the India Army Service Corps’ and Capt Bhavna Syal, a third-generation officer in the armed forces, will front the transportable satellite terminal’s contingent. For the first time, Shankhnaad, a military tune composed by an Indian classical music exponent based on a poem penned by a Mahar Regiment veteran, will also be played during the parade.