India on Wednesday celebrated its 73rd Republic Day with a pompous parade displaying its military might and cultural diversity on the ceremonial Rajpath in the heart of Delhi.
January 26, a national holiday, marks the anniversary of India officially adopting its Constitution in 1950, replacing the 1935 Government of India Act, over two years after gaining independence from Britain.
However, this year, only 5,000 people were allowed to gather on an iconic boulevard at Rajpath to witness the grand parade amid tight Covid-safety protocols.
As many as 75 military planes and choppers flew over Rajpath in an aerial display, which was the highlight of the parade this year — the 75th anniversary of India’s Independence.
While the country’s military displayed its weaponry, missiles and uniforms, police personnel performed motorcycle stunts in the parade that began at 10.30am.
After the security forces, several Indian states displayed their tableux showcasing the country’s cultural diversity with themes like the struggle for freedom movement.
Minutes before the event, Prime Minister Narendra Modi paid tributes to India’s martyred soldiers at the National War Memorial.
In the morning, Modi took to social media to wish people on the occasion. “Wishing you all a happy Republic Day. Jai Hind! #RepublicDay,” he tweeted.
Like last year, India did not have a foreign leader as the chief guest at its Republic Day parade. In 2021, India invited British Prime Minister Boris Johnson but he cancelled his visit amid a surge in Covid cases at home.
In 1966 too, India did not invite any foreign leader due to the sudden demise of then PM Lal Bahadur Shastri, following which Indira Gandhi was sworn in as the country’s first female PM on January 24 that year, two days ahead of Republic Day.
Source: United News of Bangladesh