Several firsts showcasing India’s military might, cultural diversity to adorn Republic Day 2022
This year onwards, the Republic Day celebrations will be spread over a week from January 23-30
From a grand flypast by 75 aircraft to cultural performances by 480 dancers from across the country; and from the launch of ‘Shaheedon Ko Shat Shat Naman’ programme by National Cadet Corps to a drone show by 1000 indigenously developed drones, several firsts showcasing India’s military might and cultural diversity will adorn Republic Day 2022.
President Ram Nath Kovind will lead the Nation in celebrating 73rd Republic Day on Wednesday.
The celebrations this year are special as the Republic Day falls in the 75th year of Independence, being celebrated as ‘Azadi ka Amrit Mahotsav’ across the country.
To mark the occasion, the Ministry of Defence has conceptualized a series of new events during the main parade on Rajpath on Thursday and ‘Beating the Retreat’ ceremony at Vijay Chowk on Saturday, the statement informed.
It has already been decided that the Republic Day celebrations will now be week-long from January 23-30 every year. The celebrations commenced on Sunday, the birth anniversary of great freedom fighter Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose and will culminate on January 30, which is observed as Martyrs’ Day, the Ministry of Defence said.
Several firsts planned during the main parade include the launch of ‘Shaheedon Ko Shat Shat Naman’ programme by National Cadet Corps; a grand flypast by 75 aircraft/helicopters of the Indian Air Force; cultural performances by 480 dancers selected through a nationwide Vande Bharatam dance competition; 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.
According to a statement issued by the defence ministry, a drone show by 1,000 indigenously developed drones has been planned for ‘Beating the Retreat’ ceremony, along with projection mapping.
The parade at Rajpath will start at 10.30 am, instead of the earlier timing of 10 am to provide better visibility to the parade and flypast.
The Republic Day Parade ceremony will commence with Prime Minister Narendra Modi visiting the National War Memorial, the MoD statement said.
PM Modi will lead the nation in paying solemn tributes to the fallen heroes by laying a wreath, it added.
Thereafter, the Prime Minister and other dignitaries will head to the saluting dais at Rajpath to witness the parade.
As per tradition, the National Flag will be unfurled followed by the National Anthem with a booming 21-gun salute.
The parade will commence with President Kovind taking the salute.
The proud winners of the highest gallantry awards will follow. They include the winners of Param Vir Chakra and Ashok Chakra.
Military contingents during parade
The first contingent in the uniform of the erstwhile Gwalior Lancers will be 61 Cavalry, the only active serving horse cavalry regiment in the world, the MoD statement said. It was raised on August 01, 1953 with the amalgamation of six state forces’ cavalry units, it added.
The Indian Army will be represented by a Mounted Column of 61 Cavalry, 14 Mechanised Columns, six marching contingents and a fly past by Advanced Light Helicopters (ALH) of Army Aviation.
A total of six marching contingents of the Army will be there including the Rajput Regiment, the Assam Regiment, the Jammu and Kashmir Light Regiment, the Sikh Light Regiment, the Army Ordnance Corps and the Parachute Regiment.
The theme of the marching contingents will be the display of the evolution of uniform and personnel weapon of the Indian Army over the last 75 years.
The Naval contingent will comprise 96 young sailors & four officers led by Lt Cdr Aanchal Sharma as Contingent Commander.
It will be followed by the Naval Tableau which is designed with the aim to showcase the multi-dimensional capabilities of the Indian Navy and highlight the key inductions under 'Aatmanirbhar Bharat'.
The ongoing 'Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav' also finds a special mention in the tableau.
The Indian Air Force contingent comprises 96 airmen and four officers.
The Air Force tableau is titled ‘Indian Air Force, Transforming for the Future’. The tableau showcases scaled down models of MiG-21, Gnat, Light Combat Helicopter and Rafale aircraft, as well as the Aslesha radar.
Other tableaux including those by the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) will display two tableaux, signifying the defence technological advancements of the country and the Indian Coast Guard, Contingents of Central Armed Police Force, Delhi Police and National Cadet Corps.
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 on the MyGov portal (https://www.mygov.in/rd2022/) to witness the live celebrations online, said the MoD statement.
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. All social distancing norms will be followed and wearing of masks is compulsory.
Special arrangements have been made to give opportunity to those segments of society which usually do not get to watch the parade.