New Delhi: India celebrated its 73rd Republic Day amid tight security with the iconic grand parade at the majestic  Rajpath, however, this year the grand event witnessed many firsts. From drone show by 1,000 indigenously developed drones to grand flypast by 75 aircraft of Indian Air Force, a series of new events was conceptualised by the Ministry of Defence for the emblematic R-day event and the ‘Beating the Retreat’ ceremony at Vijay Chowk on Saturday (January 29).Also Read - Cannes 2022: PM Modi Hails India as Country of Honour, Says 'Cinema Showcases Human Emotions'

The celebrations this year were special as India is in the 75th year of Independence – being celebrated as ‘Azadi ka Amrit Mahotsav’. The government had said that the Republic Day celebrations will now be celebrated for a week – between January 23 and 30 – every year. The celebrations which commenced on January 23, the birth anniversary of great freedom fighter Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose will end on January 30 – (Martyrs’ Day). Also Read - PM Narendra Modi Congratulates Indian Contingent For Best-Ever Performance At Deaflympics

Many firsts at R-Day Parade

  • For the first time, an Indian Air Force (IAF) showcased a grand flypast by 75 aircraft or helicopters.
  • In another first, 480 dancers performed during the cultural programme at the parade have been selected through a nationwide Vande Bharatam dance competition.
  • A drone show by 1,000 indigenously developed drones has also been planned for the ‘Beating the Retreat’ ceremony, along with projection mapping will be shown for the first time.
  • The main parade saw the launch of ‘Shaheedon Ko Shat Shat Naman’ programme by the National Cadet.
  • A display of ten scrolls each of 75 metres prepared during the ‘Kala Kumbh’ event and installation of 10 large LED screens for a better viewing experience of spectators.
  • For a better viewing experience at the parade, 10 large LED screens – five on each side of Rajpath has been installed.

Republic Day Parade

The Republic Day ceremony started with PM Modi visiting the National War Memorial. This year, the iconic parade at Rajpath began at 10:30 am, instead of 10 am, to provide better visibility to the parade and flypast. As per the tradition, the National Flag was unfurled followed by the National Anthem with a booming 21-gun salute. Also Read - PSI Recruitment Scam: Candidates Write Letter in Blood to PM Modi, Threaten to Join Terror Group if Denied Justice

In the wake of COVID-19, special arrangements have been made such as the number of seats for spectators has been significantly reduced and people were encouraged to register online to witness the live celebrations. Besides, only double vaccinated adults/one dose vaccinated children of 15 years and above were allowed entry at the parade. Children below 15 years of age were not permitted.

Tableaux of 12 States/Union Territories and 9 Ministries 

This year, a total of 21 tableaux, 12 of various states and Union Territories, 9 of ministries were displayed at 73rd Republic Day Parade. 12 tableaus of States and Union Territories like Gujarat, Maharashtra, Punjab, Uttar Pradesh, Goa, Meghalaya, Jammu and Kashmir etc participated  in the R-Day parade.

S NoState/UTTheme
1Arunachal PradeshAnglo-Abor (Adi) Wars
2HaryanaHaryana: No 1 in Sports
3ChhattisgarhGodhan Nyay Yojana: A new path to prosperity
4GoaSymbols of Goan heritage
5GujaratTribal Revolutionaries of Gujarat
6Jammu & KashmirChanging face of Jammu & Kashmir
7KarnatakaKarnataka: The cradle of traditional handicrafts
8MaharashtraBiodiversity and State Bio-symbols of Maharashtra
9MeghalayaMeghalaya’s 50 years of Statehood and its tribute to Women-led cooperative societies and SHGs
10PunjabPunjab’s contribution in freedom struggle
11Uttar PradeshODOP and Kashi Vishwanath Dham
12UttarakhandPragati Ki Aur Badhta Uttarakhand

The list of tableaux of Ministries/Departments is as under:

S NoMinistry/DepartmentTheme
1Ministry of Education & Ministry of Skill Development & EntrepreneurshipNational Education Policy
2Ministry of Civil AviationUDAN – Ude Desh Ka Aam Nagrik
3Ministry of Communication/Department of PostsIndia Post: 75 years @ Resolve – Women Empowerment
4Ministry of Home Affairs (CRPF)CRPF: Saga of Valour and Sacrifice
5Ministry of Housing & Urban Affairs (CPWD)Subhash @125
6Ministry of TextilesShuttling to the Future
7Ministry of Law & Justice, Department of JusticeEk Mutthi Aasmaa: Lok Adalat, Inclusive Legal system
8Ministry of Jal Shakti, Department of Drinking Water & SanitationJal Jeevan Mission: Changing Lives
9Ministry of Culture150 years of Shri Aurobindo

DRDO Tableaux

Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) also displayed two tableaux, signifying the defence technological advancements of country. The tableaux are titled ‘Suite of Indigenously Developed Sensors, Weapons and Electronic Warfare Systems for LCA Tejas’ and ‘Air Independent Propulsion System’ developed for the submarines of Indian Navy.

The first tableau showed an indigenously-developed Advanced Electronically Scanned Array Radar; five different aerials launched weapons and an Electronic Warfare Jammer to further enhance the capabilities of fourth generation LCA (Light Combat Aircraft) Tejas. The second tableau showcased indigenously-developed AIP System for propelling the Indian Naval submarines underwater. The AIP System is powered by indigenously-developed fuel cells with a novel onboard hydrogen generator.