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January 26, 2018

69th Republic Day of India 2018 Highlights

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India today celebrated it's 69th Republic Day. This day honours the date on which the Constitution of India came into effect on 26 January 1950 replacing the Government of India Act (1935) as the governing document of India. Here are the major highlights.

Chief Guests

For the first time in Indian history, more than two chief guests were invited to the Republic Day Parade this year. 10 Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) leaders attended the Republic Day Parade today. They are :
  1. Aung San Suu Kyi ( Myanmar State )
  2. Dato’ Sri Haji Mohammad Najib bin Tun Haji Abdul Razak ( Prime Minister of Malaysia)
  3. General Prayut Chan-o-cha ( Prime Minister of Thialand)
  4. Hassanal Bolkiah ( Sultan of Brunei)
  5. Hun Sen (Prime Minister of Cambodia)
  6. Joko Widodo (Ppresident of Indonesia)
  7. Lee Hsien Loong  (Prime Minister of Singapore)
  8. NGUYEN Xuan Phuc ( Prime Minister of republic of Vietnam)
  9. Rodrigo Duterte ( President of Phillipenes)
  10. Thongloun Sisoulith ( Prime Minister of Laos)
Important Note : The first-ever Chief Guest to attend the Republic Day parade at Rajpath was the then Governor General of Pakistan, Malik Ghulam Muhammad, in 1955.

Major Highlights of 69th Republic Day Celebrations of India

  • The 69th Republic Day parade saw the first-ever tableau by All India Radio and Income Tax Department.
  • The Ministry of External Affairs showcased tableaux depicting India-ASEAN relations
  • The Indo Tibetan Border Police (ITBP) tableau was showcased in the Republic Day parade after a gap of 20 years.  
  • Gujarat, Himachal Pradesh, Assam, Punjab and Maharashtra were some of the states which participated.
  • An all-woman bikers contingent of the Border Security Force showcased stunts at the Republic Day parade at Rajpath for the first time in history. 
    • The 27-member squad named 'Seema Bhavani' performed 16 varieties of stunts and acrobatics on 350cc Royal Enfield Bullet motorcycles. 
  • The traditional BSF contingent astride camels, and fifty-one horses of 61st Cavalry Regiment are two major highlights. 
  • Performances by school children (this time with a cultural focus on Indo-Asean ties) and tableau groups, an aerial fly-past with 38 aircrafts are also major attractions this year, as they are every time.
  • Padma Awards for the year 2018 (Padma Vibhushan, Padma Bhushan and Padma Shri awards) have been announced. 
    • These are three of the highest civilian awards awarded by the Government of India and were instituted in 1954. 
    • Every year, the list of awardees is announced on January 25, before the Republic day celebrations take place on the 26th.
  • Martyred Indian Air Force Garud Commando Jyoti Prakash Nirala has been posthumously awarded the Ashoka Chakra on the 69th Republic Day.
    • With this he became the first-ever airman to receive the honour for a ground combat operation
  • BSF soldier Dara Singh marched in the Republic Day parade for a record 18th time
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