Indian Republic @ 70: Grand celebrations on Jan 26

New Delhi: The full dress rehearsal for the Republic Day parade on Thursday concluded successfully, giving a glimpse of the grand spectacle to unfold to celebrate India’s 71st Republic Day.

Thursday’s dress rehearsal gave sneak previews of the way the grand spectacle, combining a display of India’s military might and cultural grandeur, will be seen on Sunday.

For the first time after the appointment of the Chief of Defence Staff (Gen. Bipin Rawat), 3 helicopters – representing the three wings of the defence forces – the army, the navy and the air – flew together, reflecting the new sense of cohesion within the three forces.

In all, 16 military contingents will take part in the parade, and 4 weapons will be showcased at the event.

In another first, on January 26, the Prime Minister accompanied by the CDS and the three Chiefs of Staff will visit the National War Memorial.

At the parade this time Brazilian President J. M. Bolsonaro will be the chief guest. He arrives in India on Friday for a 4-day visit seen as a recognition of the importance India attaches to ties with one of the largest economies in South America as well as the region in general.

Among the 16 marching contingents, ‘Stree Shakti’ will also be visible in the Navy and Air force contingents as many women officers are participating. In fact, an all-women team of CRPF will showcase their daredevil skills on motorcycles on Rajpath.

The US-made Apache attack and Chinook heavy-lift helicopters, recently inducted in the IAF, will also participate in the fly past.” A model of fourth-generation multirole fighter jet Rafale, which France will be delivering to India in phases as per the Rs 59,000-crore deal for 36 aircraft, will also be displayed at the parade. A DRDO missile used for the anti-satellite weapon test done last year under the ‘Mission Shakti’ project will also be shown. A 155mm ‘Make-in-India’ Dhanush gun, developed by Ordnance Factory Board and whose first batch was inducted last year, will also be displayed in the parade.

A total of 22 tableaux will be displayed and 44 bravehearts riding in jeeps will be part of the parade. 

Image courtesy of PTI

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