Last Updated: January 26, 2023, 12:29 IST
As the country watched the grand 74th Republic Day parade, there are several firsts when it comes to the celebrations this year. From the all women contingents to the first ‘Make in India’ gun salute, here is a list of some of the many firsts this year
- This was the first Republic Day celebrations hosted at the ceremonial boulevard after Rajpath was renamed Kartavya Path last year.
- For the first time the Egyptian Army is participating as a Foreign Contingent. The contingent will have 144 personnel participating in the parade. Egyptian President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi is the Chief Guest of the 74th Republic Day celebrations. He is also the first chief guest to attend the parade since 2020 (no chief guests in 2021 and 2022 due to Covid-19).
- An all women contingent of the Central Reserve Police Force or CRPF and several other marching contingents, including the Navy, featured women this year. The Naval contingent was also led by a woman officer, featuring three other women
- As part of the first batch of the new armed forces recruitment scheme – Six Agniveers soldiers took part in the 2023 parade
- All Indian Army equipment was on display at the Republic Day parade this year. Before this year, British guns were used for the 21-Gun Salute, but in a first, ‘Made in India’ 105 mm Indian Field Guns (IFGs) were used. The ammunition has also been produced indigenously, the Army said in a statement.
- The ‘Made in India’ motto applied to the display of weapons systems as well. In yet another first, there were no Russian tanks this time, but Indian made Arjun, and other systems all made in India, including the Akash missile system, were on display.
- Out of fifty aircraft that will take part in the Republic Day celebrations this year include the Navy’s IL-38 which will be showcased at the event for the first and perhaps the last time. IL-38 is a maritime reconnaissance aircraft of the Indian Navy that has served for nearly 42 years.
- The Border Security Force or BSF’s camel contingent will have women participants for the first time
- For the first time, a 3-D anamorphic projection will be organised during the Beating the Retreat ceremony on the façade of North and South Blocks.
- The Indian Air Force, for the first time, will play four Raga-based tunes this year during the Beating the Retreat ceremony to give it a more Indian flavour. For instance, a tune named ‘Charkha’ is based on Raga Bhupali and mixed with another Raga — Mishra Khamaj. This would be the first time that any force plays raga-based tunes for the ceremony.
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