New Delhi, Aug 15: Prime Minister Narendra Modi will unfurl the national flag and address the nation from the historic Red Fort on the 72nd Independence Day on Wednesday. This will be followed by school children and National Cadet Corps (NCC) Cadets singing the national anthem.

This will be the Prime Minister’s fifth speech after the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)-led National Democratic Alliance (NDA) came to power in 2014. He will be received by the Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman, Minister of State (MoS) for defence Dr Subhash Bhamre and Defence Secretary Sanjay Mitra.

The unfurling of the tri-colour will synchronise with the 21 Gun Salute fired by the valiant gunners of the elite 2281 Field Battery (Ceremonial). The ceremonial battery will be commanded by Lieutenant colonel C Sandeep and the Gun Position Officer will be Regiment Havildar Major Kolate Rajesh Shripati.

Seven hundred cadets of the National Cadet Corps drawn from 16 schools of the Delhi Directorate comprising the Army, Navy and Air Force wings are participating in the flag hoisting ceremony this year.

According to media reports, Prime Minister Modi asked for ideas and suggestions directly from the common masses–a practice he has followed for the past three years. The topics that he would be discussing are cases of rape, education, employment, reservation system and open defecation.

The cadets will take part in the singing of patriotic songs and the national anthem along with the school children. While 3,500 girls from 36 schools of Directorate of Education, Government of Delhi will sing the national anthem, 5,000 boys from 72 schools will witness the event. On this occasion, these school children will display the formation of Bharat.

Security in the national capital has been tightened. The Red Fort from where Prime Minister Modi will address the nation has been put under a high security cover. Around 70,000 Delhi Police personnel and about 90 companies of security forces have been deployed.

As far as the celebrations are concerned across the country, the Attari-Wagah border in Amritsar has been illuminated in tri colours of national flag. Along with that, the Parliament, Vayu Bhawan and North and South Block have also turned tri-coloured. Meanwhile, Mumbai’s Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Terminus and Moradabad railway station have beautifully been illuminated in tricolour.

What to Expect From PM Modi’s Independence Day Speech

PM Modi is likely to announce a slew of social welfare schemes on the occasion of Independence Day. He may also announce tweaking of the Sukanya Sammridhi Yojana to provide more benefit to the girl child along with benefits for about 32 crore Jan Dhan account holders.

According to PTI sources, the government may also announce an attractive micro insurance scheme. Furthermore, to provide relief to the old-age people, Modi may announce doubling of the maximum limit under Atal Pension Yojana. Currently, the amount is limit to Rs 5,000.

In addition, the speech may also mention crucial issues like the National Register of Citizens (NRC), Rafale Deal, mob lynching and atrocities against Dalits.

Last year, Modi spoke for nearly 54 minutes from the Red Fort, which was his shortest Independence Day address to the nation since 2014. He spoke for over 65 minutes in 2014, 86 minutes in 2015, and 94 minutes in 2016.

(Inputs from Agencies)