This year, look up in the sky, there will be 75 military aircraft, 1000 drones, and 600 specially selected performers, and tableau of 12 states and Union Territories as well as nine ministries are going to be part of Republic Day celebrations in 2022 at Rajpath.
Will there be foreign Chief Guests?
In view of the Omicron variant cases going up not only in India but across the globe, there is no clarity if the foreign chief guests will be here at the Republic Day Celebrations on Rajpath.
The Civil Society will be special guests.
Was there a chief guest in 2021?
The British PM Boris Johnson was expected to be the chief guest. However due to the surge in COVID-19 cases in his country, he could not come.
In the past thrice India had no foreign chief guests for the Republic Day Parade. It was in 1952, 1953 and 1966.
In 1966, India’s former PM Lal Bahadur Shastri had passed away on January 11. And just a couple of days ahead of the Republic Day, the new Prime Minister Indira Gandhi was sworn in.
The Republic Day, Beating the Retreat invitation will have seeds of medicinal plants like Ashwagandha, Aloe Vera, Amla embedded. People are encouraged to plant later either in their gardens or flower pots.
For the first time, in an effort to encourage start-ups, during the Beating the Retreat IIT-Delhi will showcase 1,000 drones. Countries like the UK, Russia and China have had drone shows.
The government has decided to start Republic Day Celebrations from January 23 instead of January 24 and will culminate on January 30.
The number of visitors too will be kept low. The numbers could be between 5000-8000 as compared to the 25,000 visitors’ in 2021.
Sanitation workers, construction labour, auto-rickshaw drivers, and others from the civil society have been invited. And they all have to be fully vaccinated.
Also, around 600 young artists will be performing at Rajpath. And they were selected through a nationwide competition ‘Vande Bharatam’. This was organized by the Ministry of Defence and Ministry of Culture. And the purpose was to ensure that there is participation of people from across the country.
Activities banned in New Delhi ahead of RD Parade
Para-jumping, Remote Aircraft, Quadcopters, Hot Air Balloon, UAV and Para motor till February. Order for the same has been issued to ensure that no untoward accidents take place in the capital.
According to reports, starting January 20 until February 15, for security reasons such activities will be banned and the criminals would be booked under IPC section 188.
Orders issued by the competent authorities have been sent to all the police stations in the city, top police officers, DDA, PWD, New Delhi Municipal Council (NDMC), municipal corporations, and Delhi Cantonment Board.
Look out for
Two important changes in 2022 RD Celebrations: The Celebrations will start January 23, 2022 to mark the 125th birth anniversary of Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose. And end on January 30 to commemorate Martyrs Day.
This year the celebrations will start half an hour late, this means it will start at 10.30 am instead of 10 am. Why? For the visibility to improve which will be helpful in the flypast.
The government is encouraging hybrid mode to watch live the Republic Day celebrations.
There will be tableaux from states including Haryana, Arunachal Pradesh, Goa, Chhattisgarh, Punjab, and Gujarat, UP, Karnataka, Meghalaya, and Uttarakhand.
This year a special programme will be at India Gate, where Prime Minister Narendra Modi will confer the Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose Apada Prabandhan Puraskar. This is a new award which will be given in recognition of the contributions in disaster management to institutions and individuals.
Beating the Retreat
This year there will be two new events. To commemorate 75 years of Independence, laser projection on the parapet of North and South Block.
There will be a drone show by a start-up from IIT Delhi — Bot Lab Dynamics with nearly 1000 drones.
PM Modi’s and other visits cancelled due to COVID-19
The visit of Prime Minister Narendra Modi to UAE had to be postponed due to a surge in positive COVID-19 cases. The mega event “Vibrant Gujarat” had to be canceled.