India today celebrates her 69th Republic Day and people have been gathering from early Friday morning to witness the parade at Rajpath. With passionate patriotism written on their faces and evident enthusiasm in the air, Indians of all age groups braved the cold to walk through layers of security.
Today the entire country viewed a unique highlight at Rajpath and during the course of the parade. These are some of the important points of the celebrations.
For the first time, Modi government invited 10 foreign dignitaries as chief guests for the Republic Day celebrations. The leaders have come from ASEAN countries and their presence indicates India’s improving ties with South-East Asian countries.
The main stage, which is enclosed with bullet-proof glass, consists of 100-feet wide this year. This is three times bigger than what it was in 2017.
More than 700 students from across the guest countries have participated in the celebrations.
For the first time, Seema Bhavani – BSF’s all-woman daredevils squad is participating in the parade. The 113-biking contingent has performed stunts and acrobats on their 350cc Royal Enfield Bullet motorcycles.
Floats from 14 states and union territories, and from nine ministries have accompanied by a special float signifying that India’s 25 years of being closely associated with ASEAN countries.
The All-India Radio float lead the parade for the first time.
For the first time, floats from Income Tax Department and Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR) was witnessed at the parade.
For the first time ever, attack helicopter Rudra had participated in the celebrations. In its debut the parade, Rudra had joined 21 fighters, 12 helicopters and five transporters from IAF in the fly past.