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Republic Day 2017: Parade to showcase India's military strength, achievements

The 68th Republic Day Parade will showcase India’s military strength and achievements in a range of areas and its diverse culture at the Rajpath on Thursday. Abu Dhabi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan will be the Chief Guest of the Republic Day parade. Led by Wing Commander Ramesh Kumar Dubey, the parade will start with four Mi-17 helicopters, flying an Indian flag and three other helicopters flying ensigns of the Army, Navy and the Air Force, will shower flower petals.

This will be followed by Parade Commander Lt Gen Manoj Naravane and his second-in-command, Maj Gen Rajesh Sahai paying respects to the Supreme Commander of the Armed Forces — the President of India. Param Vir Chakra and Ashok Chakra awardees will also be follow the Parade Commander. A contingent of UAE soldiers, along with its music band will lead the parade. Major attraction of the parade would be marching of India’s only mounted Calvary with its majestic horses. The parade will also witness the heroic motor bike stunts by defence personnel. One of the major highlights parade will be the fly past by Mi-35 helicopters, indigenous combat light aircraft Tejas, Jaguars and Sukohis. However, these two events will be carried out at the fag end of the parade.

The army will also showcase its Tank T-90 and Infantry Combat Vehicle and Bramhos Missile, one of its treasured armour, its Weapon Locating Radar Swathi, Transportable Satellite Terminal and Akash Weapon System. Another attraction will be the Dhanush Gun system. Advanced Light Helicopters Rudra will then make a fly-past. The R-Day parade will also witness Mechanised Infantry Regiment, Bihar Regiment, Gorkha Training Centre and combined band of Punjab Regimental Centre, Sikh Regimental Centre, Madras Engineering Group, Infantry, Battalion (Territorial Army) Sikh Light Infantry. The parade will also see tableau from ex-servicemen followed by Naval Marching Contingent and a naval tableau. An Air force Marching Contingent followed by an air force tableau will also showcase India’s air prowess.

The Defence Research Development Organisation (DRDO) will showcase its Advanced Towed Artificial Gun System (ATAGS) and medium power radar Arudhra. The Paramilitary forces contingent will be led by BSF’s Camel Band followed by marching contingents of Indian Coast Guard, CISF, Delhi Police, elite NSG and the NCC. Odisha, Arunachal Pradesh, Maharashtra, Manipur, Gujarat, Lakshdwaeep, Karanataka, Delhi, Himachal Pradesh, Haryana, West Bengal, Punjab, Tamil Nadu, Tripura, Jammu & Kashmir, Assam, these states will showcase their tradition and culture through their respective tableau. The Department of Central Board of Excise and Customs under the Ministry of Finance, along with the Ministry of Skill Development, will also see their tableau at the R-Day Parade.