REPUBLIC DAY CELEBRATIONS ON DAY 2
President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle were present at the two-hour long parade, which typically showcases the country’s military might as well as its diversity.
The year marked the first time ever that an all-woman contingent from the Army, Navy and Air Force marched in the Republic Day parade. Although women officers have participated in Republic Day Parade before, it is the first time that an all-women contingent of the armed forces participated in the event on January 26. The Army contingent was led by Captain Divya Ajith, the Navy was led by Lieutenant Commander Sandhya Chauhan and the Air Force contingent was led by Squadron Leader Sneha Shekhawat.
The Republic Day Parade was a curtain raiser of the recently acquired long-rangemaritime surveillance and anti-submarine aircraft P-8I and the advanced air fighter MiG-29 K. The performance of the fighters thrilled everyone on the overcast cloudy day.
The tableau of Make in India stole the show at the Republic Day celebrations at Rajpath. The logo of Make in India floated through the famous Rajpath road while everyone applauded the effort behind the project.
India’s newest state, Telangana, made its debut in the Republic Day parade, displaying the state’s illustrious festival “Bonalu” by portraying the image of Goddess Mahakali and also the Golconda Fort of Hyderabad. Telangana state came into being in June 2014 after being separated from Andhra Pradesh. Participants danced to musical instruments such as dappu, kommu, tasha and pagadam. Women were dressed in traditional attire portraying their state’s culture.
Tableaux from 16 States and 09 Central Ministries and Departments were present in the varied historical, architectural and cultural heritage of the country. They showcased country’s progress in different fields, particularly floats from Women and Child Development Ministry depicting Beti Bachao Beti Padhao, Sikkims contribution to the national economy through its large Cardamom Cultivation and tableau on Bhagoria tribal festival of Madhya Pradesh which will be of special attraction.
In the childrens pageant section, nearly 1,200 boys and girls drawn from four schools in Delhi and one each from West Zone and South Central Cultural Centres who performed colourful dances on Rajpath. In this category a dance depicted India’s first successful launching of spaceship Mangalyaan into the orbit of Mars and another dance programme depicted Swachh Bharat Mission.
Jaanbaaz, the motorcycle display by the Border Security Force was a major attraction of the parade. Incidentally, the paramilitary force celebrated its Golden Jubilee and performed different stunts like Border Men Salute, Side Riding, Ladder Balancing, Communal Harmony, Peacock Riding, Acrobat, Parallel Bar, Lotus, Seema Prahari and Flag March formations etc on moving motor cycles.