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India’s 74th Republic Day Highlights: Colourful parade showcases India’s military might, cultural diversity, ‘Nari Shakti’

Republic Day Parade 2023 Highlights: In another first, the Republic Day parade witnessed a contingent of a women-armed police battalion of CRPF. The BSF's camel band and Delhi Police's band also saw women constables participating for the first time.

Written by Sonal Gupta
New Delhi | Updated: February 2, 2023 13:08 IST
Republic Day celebrations todayIn a first, the Republic Day parade on Thursday witnessed a contingent of all-women-armed police battalion of CRPF. (Express)

India’s 74th Republic Day Parade Highlights: As many as 23 tableaux, 17 from states and Union Territories and six from various ministries and departments, rolled down the Kartavya Path as part of the Republic Day parade showing a plethora of cultures from across India and bringing the boulevard alive with song and dance. As the spectacle came to an end, Prime Minsiter Narendra Modi greeted the crowd amid cheers, after bidding adieu to President Droupadi Murmu and her Egyptian counterpart Abdel Fattah el-Sisi, the chief guest at the event.

The parade was kicked off in Delhi by the guest contingent of the Egyptian Armed Forces, followed by a show of strength by the Armed Forces. Made-in-India weapons were on display at the parade this year. Breaking from tradition, in a bid to get rid of colonial vestiges, an indigenous 105-mm Indian Field Guns (IFG) offered the 21-gun salute to President Murmu. In another first, the parade witnessed a contingent of women armed police battalion of CRPF. The BSF’s camel band and Delhi Police’s band also saw women constables participating for the first time.

This was also the first time an Egyptian president had been invited to be the chief guest of the event. Earlier, PM Modi paid tributes to martyrs at the National War Memorial. He was welcomed by Defence Minister Rajnath Singh. Extending his greetings to the nation on the 74th Republic Day, PM Modi earlier said, “We wish to move ahead unitedly to make the dreams of the great freedom fighters of the country come true.”

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Live Blog

Republic Day Parade 2023 Highlights: Made-in-India weapons on display only at Republic Day Parade; Egypt President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi chief guest at event; PM Modi offers tributes at National War Memorial

22:15 (IST)26 Jan 2023
Egyptian Army contingent, 23 tableaux, fly-past through misty skies: Some of the highlights of Republic Day parade

With a 144-member contingent of the Egyptian Army, ‘daredevils’ who stood on ladders atop moving motorcycles, and 479 artistes dancing together, the 74th Republic Day parade made its way down Kartavya Path on Thursday.

Invites to the event could be downloaded and the QR codes on phones were scanned at entry gates. Bleachers were placed for guests on the lawns that flank the revamped Kartavya Path stretch, and around 45,000 people were expected to have attended the event. Abhinaya Harigovind writes

20:45 (IST)26 Jan 2023
Republic Day 2023: Ambedkar’s worldview offers a way forward

As the country celebrates the 73rd anniversary of Republic Day, the nation painfully notes the RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat’s use of Golwalkar’s formulation that Hindus are at war for a thousand years against an external and internal enemy. The idea of the republic enshrined in the Constitution expresses the resolve of the people of India to co-exist in the spirit of reconciliation, understanding and accommodation. In a country where several languages are spoken, people profess different faiths and ways of life differ, this emphasis on fraternity is salutary. The notion of a section of the population engaged in war in the name of faith, and that too for a thousand years, is a negation of the vision of the Constitution — secularism is a part of its basic structure. D Raja writes

19:39 (IST)26 Jan 2023
Pratap Bhanu Mehta writes: This Republic Day, fighting the dark

The Indian Constitution is standing on the precipice. It might be easy to lose sight of this important fact amidst the continuing salience of elections, the complex social and economic churning and the cultural rhythms that mark Indian society. Almost all the major tendencies that presage a constitutional decline are gaining ascendancy — charismatic populism, communal majoritarianism, partisan degradation, institutional extremism and control of civil society. Cumulatively, these forces degrade the core meaning of constitutionalism; that no one should be able to exercise power, especially arbitrary power, in the service of oppression, without being held accountable. Pratap Bhanu Mehta writes

19:00 (IST)26 Jan 2023
India exhibits military might, cultural diversity during parade | 10 points

India marked its 74th Republic Day on Thursday with a colourful parade while displaying a perfect blend of its military prowess and vibrant cultural heritage at the newly christened Kartavya Path (previously known as Rajpath) in New Delhi. The public holiday commemorates the adoption of the Constitution of India on January 26, 1950. Here are top 10 points today

🔴 In a first, a women’s contingent of the CRPF was one of the main highlights of the parade. Several other marching contingents, including the Delhi Police’s pipe band comprised 35 women constables. In the BSF camel contingent, for the first time, women camel riders participated on top of decorated camels.

🔴 The Naval contingent, led by a woman officer, featured three women, and six Agniveers, who are soldiers in the first batch of the new armed forces recruitment scheme. The colourful tableaux, which are an integral part of the parade, also witnessed a life statue of a decorated woman soldier in ceremonial uniform in a saluting position. The tableaux paid tribute to all the gallant women soldiers working for the nation.

🔴 Around 45,000 people attended the parade at Kartavya Path and amongst the invites were milk and vegetable vendors, street vendors, small grocery shopkeepers, rickshaw pullers, shramyogis of Central Vista with their families and maintenance workers on Kartavya Path. The celebration reflected the Jan Bhagidari (people’s participation) vision of PM Modi.

18:27 (IST)26 Jan 2023
Rafale, Sukhoi and Apache jets fly past Kartavya Path
18:01 (IST)26 Jan 2023
On Republic Day, Ministry of Culture’s tableau presents the power of feminine divinity

The Ministry of Culture’s tableau, which rolled down Kartavya Path for the 74th Republic Day celebrations Thursday, showcased the power of the feminine divinity. The theme was ‘Shakti Rupena Samsthita’ and through art and dance forms, ‘Devi’ was celebrated, Union Culture Secretary Govind Mohan said.

‘Nari Shakti’ was also the theme of the dance performance organised by the ministry, with 326 female and 153 male artists, as part of the Vande Bharatam programme, Mohan said. These 479 artists were chosen through a nationwide dance competition. The artists were in the age group of 17-30 years, and presented classical, folk and contemporary fusion dances, depicting the ‘power of women’ through five elements – earth, water, air, space and fire. Divya A writes

17:25 (IST)26 Jan 2023
How the Constitutions of India, Pakistan, and Bangladesh were drafted

When was the Constitution of India written? The easy answer to this question is that it was adopted by the Constituent Assembly of India on November 26, 1949 and came into effect on January 26, 1950. But the history of the Constitution of India dates back many decades and reforms, and in the process of the subcontinent being divided into three separate nations in the ensuing decades, what emerged were three different Constitutions, each borrowing from one another and yet reflective of the core values that shaped these individual nations. Adrija Roychowdhury and Mira Patel write

16:54 (IST)26 Jan 2023
Grateful to Egypt President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi for gracing this year's R-day celebrations: PM Modi

Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday thanked Egyptian President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi for taking part in the 74th Republic Day celebrations which took place at the Kartavya Path in New Delhi. "I am grateful to President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi for gracing this year’s Republic Day celebrations with his august presence," Modi tweeted. 

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16:28 (IST)26 Jan 2023
In Pictures | Daredevils form human pyramid on Kartavya Path

33 Corps of Signals’ Dare Devils formed the human pyramid as part of the Republic Day parade. (Express/Praveen Khanna)

16:03 (IST)26 Jan 2023
In speeches on Republic Day, Constitution, Judiciary, tussle with Governors to the fore

In their Republic Day addresses, Chief Ministers across the country spoke about the Constitution and its message. Delhi CM Arvind Kejriwal also spoke of “Chinese aggression” along the border, while his Assam counterpart Himanta Biswa Sarma called the United Liberated Front of Asom (I) the “last mile” to peace in the state.

The deteriorating relationship between governors and state governments was on display too — Telangana CM K Chandrashekar Rao, also known as KCR, did not attend an event on the occasion ,while DMK allies boycotted a high tea organised by Governor R N Ravi in Tamil Nadu. Read more

15:49 (IST)26 Jan 2023
Republic Day celebrations in J&K's Anantnag district amid snowfall
15:44 (IST)26 Jan 2023
At Indian Air Force’s Republic Day show of strength, Rafale, Sukhoi and Apache jets fly past Kartavya Path

The Republic Day 2023 parade saw a spectacle of India’s military might and a plethora of cultures from across the country. The Indian Air Force showcased its array of vintage and modern aircraft comprising the Rafale jets, Sukhois, Apaches and Jaguars in the much-anticipated Fly-Past.

Though the cloudy skies played spoilsport for spectators on the ground at the Kartavya Path, videos supplied by the IAF of the jets in action show how the aircraft created these formations mid-flight: Watch videos here

15:33 (IST)26 Jan 2023
In Pictures | PM Modi greets crowd post Kartavya Path parade in New Delhi

As the spectacle came to an end, Prime Minsiter Narendra Modi greeted the crowd amid cheers, after bidding adieu to President Droupadi Murmu and her Egyptian counterpart Abdel Fattah el-Sisi, the chief guest at the event. (Express/Praveen Khanna)

15:27 (IST)26 Jan 2023
Women lead contingents at Republic Day parade attended by street vendors, rickshaw pullers

The 74th Republic Day parade Thursday at the newly developed Kartavya Path, the revamped Rajpath, in New Delhi witnessed the participation of several women contingents, including those of Central Reserve Police Force, Border Security Force, Delhi Police and Indian Navy. The celebrations commenced with the homage ceremony at the National War Memorial where Prime Minister Narendra Modi led the nation in paying tribute to fallen soldiers. Read more

15:08 (IST)26 Jan 2023
In Pictures | President Droupadi Murmu, Egypt President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi at Republic Day celebrations

Egyptian President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi, along with President Droupadi Murmu and Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday watched the colorful parade at the Kartavya Path in New Delhi, on the occasion of Republic Day. (Express/Praveen Khanna)

14:43 (IST)26 Jan 2023
Express Impact: Two Punjab girls who ride a boat across Sutlej to reach high school honoured on R-Day

Kareena Kaur (12) and Kirna Rani (13), two girls from Kaluwara village of Punjab’s Ferozepur district, who ride a boat daily across Sutlej river to reach the senior secondary school at Gatti Rajoke village, were honoured by Punjab Education Minister Harjot Singh Bains at a district-level Republic Day programme in Ferozepur on Thursday.

In a report dated November 16 last year, The Indian Express had highlighted the story of the girls from Kaluwara, a village on the zero line of the India-Pakistan border in Ferozepur, who have to pull a rickety wooden boat (berhi) daily and then walk 4 km on foot to reach a senior secondary school at the nearby Gatti Rajoke village. Read more

14:33 (IST)26 Jan 2023
How the Constitutions of India, Pakistan, and Bangladesh were drafted

When was the Constitution of India written? The easy answer to this question is that it was adopted by the Constituent Assembly of India on November 26, 1949 and came into effect on January 26, 1950. But the history of the Constitution of India dates back many decades and reforms, and in the process of the subcontinent being divided into three separate nations in the ensuing decades, what emerged were three different Constitutions, each borrowing from one another and yet reflective of the core values that shaped these individual nations. To know more read Mira Patel and Adrija Roychowdhury's research piece here

14:31 (IST)26 Jan 2023
On Republic Day, Ministry of Culture’s tableau presents the power of feminine divinity

The Ministry of Culture’s tableau, which rolled down Kartavya Path for the 74th Republic Day celebrations Thursday, showcased the power of the feminine divinity. The theme was ‘Shakti Rupena Samsthita’ and through art and dance forms, ‘Devi’ was celebrated, Union Culture Secretary Govind Mohan said. 

‘Nari Shakti’ was also the theme of the dance performance organised by the ministry, with 326 female and 153 male artists, as part of the Vande Bharatam programme, Mohan said. These 479 artists were chosen through a nationwide dance competition. The artists were in the age group of 17-30 years, and presented classical, folk and contemporary fusion dances, depicting the ‘power of women’ through five elements – earth, water, air, space and fire. Read more

14:28 (IST)26 Jan 2023
Watch | At IAF's Republic Day show of strength, Rafale, Sukhoi and Apache jets fly past Kartavya Path

The Republic Day 2023 parade saw a spectacle of India’s military might and a plethora of cultures from across the country. The Indian Air Force showcased its array of vintage and modern aircraft comprising the Rafale jets, Sukhois, Apaches and Jaguars in the much-anticipated Fly-Past. 

Though the cloudy skies played spoilsport for spectators on the ground at the Kartavya Path, videos supplied by the IAF of the jets in action captured the essence of the parade’s grand finale. Watch here

14:03 (IST)26 Jan 2023
Ruckus at R-Day event in Haryana’s Pehowa as woman shouts slogans against minister Sandeep Singh

The Republic Day celebration at Pehowa town in Haryana was marred by unruly scenes and sloganeering on Thursday as a Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) leader voiced her protest against minister Sandeep Singh, who was the chief guest at the function. 

Singh, the BJP minister of state (printing and stationery), has been booked in a sexual harassment case and various khaps in Haryana had protested the announcement that he would unfurl the national flag at Pehowa, his constituency. 

On Thursday, as Singh, the former sports and youth affairs minister, was seated on stage, Sonia Duhan, the head of the NCP’s youth wing in Haryana, began shouting slogans. Witnessing the ruckus, police personnel tried to take Duhan away. Read more

Abdel Fattah El-Sisi, Republic Day celebrations, Republic Day chief guest. indian express Egypt President Abdel Fattah El-SiSi arrives at the Palam Air Force station in New Delhi on January 24. (Express photo: Anil Sharma)

El-Sisi in New Delhi for Republic Day: Significance of his visit, and India’s ties with Egypt

Egypt’s President Abdel Fattah El-Sisithe chief guest for the Republic Day celebrations this year, landed in India on Tuesday (January 24). This is the first time that an Egyptian President has been invited as chief guest for the event.

What is El-Sisi’s schedule in India?

Sisi will be accorded a ceremonial welcome at the Rashtrapati Bhavan on January 25, and President Droupadi Murmu will host a State Banquet in his honour the same evening.

Sisi will have a meeting and delegation-level talks with Prime Minister Narendra Modi on bilateral, regional and global issues of mutual interest. External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar will also call on President Sisi. The visiting dignitary will interact with the Indian business community at an event on the same day, according to the Ministry of External Affairs.

Republic Day 2023 to feature 23 tableaux from Assam, Jammu & Kashmir, more: How are they selected?

The Minister of Defence on January 22 announced that 17 states and union territories, such as West Bengal, Assam, Arunachal Pradesh, Tripura, and Jammu & Kashmir, will display their tableaux at Kartavya Path for the Republic Day parade.

In a statement, the ministry mentioned that apart from the states and union territories, six of the ministries and departments will also display their tableaux.

“Twenty-three tableaux — 17 from states and union territories and six from various ministries and departments — will be displayed, and will depict the nation’s rich cultural heritage, economic progress and strong internal and external security,” the Defence Ministry said.

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First published on: 25-01-2023 at 13:31 IST
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