India celebrated its 73rd Republic Day today with the iconic parade at Delhi's Rajpath showcasing its military prowess and cultural pageantry. A flypast by 75 aircraft and helicopters was the highlight of this year's parade.
This year's celebrations are significant - it's the 75th anniversary of India's Independence, being observed as 'Azadi ka Amrit Mahotsav' across the country.
Strict Covid protocol was in place as only 5,000 people attended the celebrations at Rajpath. Only fully vaccinated adults and children above 15 who had received the first shot were allowed. Due to the pandemic, there was no foreign contingent this year.
The parade started at 10:30 am, half-an-hour later than usual for better visibility. Ahead of the event, Prime Minister Narendra Modi paid tribute to India's fallen soldiers at the National War Memorial.
The parade, led by Lieutenant General Vijay Kumar Mishra, started after the tricolour was unfurled with a 21-gun salute. The winners of the country's highest gallantry awards, Param Vir Chakra and Ashok Chakra, led the contingents in saluting the President, the Supreme Commander of armed forces.
How Indian Army uniforms and rifles evolved over the decades since independence was on display at the parade. Three contingents of the Army wore uniforms and carried rifles from previous decades, and one wore the new combat uniform and carried the latest Tavor rifles.
President Kovind posthumously awarded Ashok Chakra, the country's highest peacetime gallantry award, to Assistant Sub Inspector Babu Ram, who was killed fighting terrorists in Kashmir. The officer's wife received the award on his behalf.
The contingents of security forces were followed by tableux from states that showcased India's cultural diversity, with themes ranging from the freedom struggle to biodiversity.
Several government ministries and departments also took out tabluex, highlighting flagship initiatives such as Jal Jeevan Mission. The Central Public Works Development tableau paid tribute to Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose on his 125th birth anniversary.
About 480 dancers from diverse genre, who were selected through a nationwide dance competition, performed in the parade.
For the 'Beating Retreat' ceremony at Vijay Chowk on January 29, a drone show with 1,000 indigenously manufactured drones has been planned.
Here are the LIVE Updates of Republic Day 2022:
Indian Ambassador in Madagascar, Abhay Kumar today unfurled the National Flag to mark the 73rd Republic Day of India. The event was attended by the Indian community in Madagascar. Mr Kumar also hosted a reception on the occasion of the 73rd Republic Day of India, in which the Foreign Minister of Madagascar Patrick Rajoelina was the Chief Guest. The President of the Senate of Madagascar also attended the reception besides the Ambassadors and the Heads of International Organisations in Madagascar. (ANI)
Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath today unfurled the national flag at his official residence in Lucknow on the occasion of 73rd Republic Day. Like every year in the national capital Delhi, this year too, a glimpse of the country's strength and culture was seen on the Rajpath. The tableau of Uttar Pradesh at the Republic Day parade in New Delhi showcased Kashi Vishwanath Dham's glorious history and achievements achieved through skill development and employment through the One District One Product (ODOP) scheme. (ANI)
73वें गणतंत्र दिवस के अवसर पर... https://t.co/ChnLD6HdMn- Yogi Adityanath (@myogiadityanath) January 26, 2022
Honoured to unfurl the National Flag and take salute at the 73rd Republic Day Parade held at Guru Gobind Singh Ji Stadium in Jalandhar.- Charanjit S Channi (@CHARANJITCHANNI) January 26, 2022
Jai Hind pic.twitter.com/eJ5SGbgIoJ
🇦🇺🇮🇳 enjoy a wonderful friendship. While we celebrate #AustraliaDay today, I also extend my very best wishes to my good friend @narendramodi and all Indians on #RepublicDayIndia- Scott Morrison (@ScottMorrisonMP) January 26, 2022
गणतंत्र दिवस की शुभकामनाएँ| #dosti
On the occasion of Republic Day, Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal unfurled the national flag at his residence on Wednesday. Taking to Twitter, Mr Kejriwal said, "The Constitution of India is the largest written constitution in the world. Our constitution, written by Babasaheb Bhimrao Ambedkar, encapsulates the hopes and aspirations of every Indian. Many many greetings to all the countrymen on the 73rd Republic Day of the great Indian Republic." He also distributed sweets among Delhi Police personnel after the flag hoisting ceremony at his residence.
73वें गणतंत्र दिवस की सुबह अपने आवास पर तिरंगा फहराकर अपने महान गणतंत्र के इस पर्व की शुरुआत की। 🇮🇳 pic.twitter.com/xRhFM2fNXj- Arvind Kejriwal (@ArvindKejriwal) January 26, 2022
On the occasion of #RepublicDay2022 Dr. Suresh Kumar, Cd'A hoisted the Tricolour at HCI Islamabad and read the President's message. #AzadiKaAmritMahotsav#IndiaAt75#RepublicDay2022#AmritMahotsav@MEAIndia@IndianDiplomacypic.twitter.com/I1dq6795uW- India in Pakistan (@IndiainPakistan) January 26, 2022
The UK and India are tied by bonds that span over decades, through generations and across some of the greatest challenges we have faced.- Boris Johnson (@BorisJohnson) January 26, 2022
I want to send my best wishes from the UK to the people of India, and to all British Indians, on India's Republic Day 🇬🇧🇮🇳
On the 73rd #RepublicDay of India, @AmbKapoor paid floral tributes to Mahatma Gandhi, unfurled the national flag and read out the President's message to the Nation.#RepublicDayIndia#RepublicDay2022@MEAIndia@IndianDiplomacy@ANI@DDNewslivepic.twitter.com/fkWK4JANoi- India in Russia (@IndEmbMoscow) January 26, 2022
During the Republic Day parade at Rajpath in New Delhi, the Border Security Force's (BSF) Seema Bhawani Motorcycle team put up a stunning display, presenting a salutation to the President. Read here.
The Embassy of India in China celebrated India's 73rd Republic Day on Wednesday. Dr. Acquino Vimal, Deputy Chief of Mission, Embassy of India, unfurled the Indian flag and read out President Ram Nath Kovind's message to the country.(ANI)January 26, 2022
President's Bodyguard horse Virat retires from service today. It was given the Chief of the Army Staff Commendation Medal this year.
President Kovind, PM Modi and Defence Minister Rajnath Singh bid him farewell on the occasion
(Pic source: President of India) pic.twitter.com/L7G2OTpJJn
In the largest ever aerial display in the country, 75 aircraft flew past the Rajpath in Delhi to celebrate the 75th year of India's independence. The Indian Air Force, for the first time, has coordinated with public broadcaster Doordarshan to show recorded in-flight videos. Stunning bird's eye visuals of the formations and the aircraft flying above the clouds were telecast today. Large screens at the parade venue also showed the visuals live. Five recently acquired Rafale jets also participated in the display.
Vintage, as well as modern jets and helicopters like the Indian Navy's MiG29K, P-8I surveillance aircraft, Rafale, Sukhoi, Jaguar, Mi-17, Sarang, Apache and Dakota, displayed various formations, including Vinaash, Tangail, Rahat, Meghna, Eklavya, Rudra, Trishul, Tiranga, Vijay and Amrit. Aircraft from the army, navy and air force participated in the majestic display.
Ministry of Civil Aviation's tableau participates in #RepublicDayParade for the first time.- ANI (@ANI) January 26, 2022
It showcases Regional Connectivity Scheme UDAN. Today, 403 UDAN routes connect 65 underserved/unserved airports, incl helicopters & water aerodromes & over 80 lakh people have benefitted pic.twitter.com/coJuE4yGIF
Tableau of UP showcases achievement through skill development &employment via 'One District One Product', based on new micro, small & medium enterprise policy & industrial development policy of the state govt. Development in Kashi Vishwanath corridor also exhibited.#RepublicDaypic.twitter.com/r2eUNtWZv0- ANI (@ANI) January 26, 2022
#WATCH The cockpit view of the Rudra formation led by Col Sudipto Chaki of 301 Army Aviation Special Operations Sqn with National Flag comprising two Dhruv helicopters and two ALH Rudra Helicopters#RepublicDayParade- ANI (@ANI) January 26, 2022
(Video source: Ministry of Defence) pic.twitter.com/2Hac9YbPqb
Indian Navy tableau participates in the #RepublicDayParade at Rajpath- ANI (@ANI) January 26, 2022
The tableau is designed with an aim to showcase the multi-dimensional capabilities of the Navy as well as highlight key inductions under 'Atmanirbhar Bharat'. 'Azadi ka Amrit Mahotsav' also finds a spl mention pic.twitter.com/70zAoOXHL3
President Ramnath Kovind on Wednesday posthumously awarded Ashok Chakra to Assistant Sub Inspector Babu Ram of the Jammu and Kashmir Police at the Republic Day parade.
Babu Ram's widow Rina Rani and son Manik received the award from President Kovind.
ASI Babu Ram killed three terrorists during an operation in Srinagar on August 29, 2020. He displayed valour and exemplary raw courage in engaging and eliminating terrorists and died for the country.