India celebrated 69th Republic Day on January 26, 2018. Republic Day celebrations are held to honour the date on which the Constitution of India came into effect i.e. on January 26, 1950.
10 ASEAN leaders attended India’s Republic Day celebrations
On January 26, 2018, leaders of all the 10 Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) member countries attended India’s Republic Day celebration at Rajpath, New Delhi as Chief Guests.
- Leaders who attended the event: Myanmar’s State Counsellor Aung San Suu Kyi, Philippines President Rodrigo Duterte, Vietnam Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc, Thai Prime Minister Gen Prayut Chan-o-cha, Brunei’s Sultan Haji Hassanal Bolkiah, Singaporean Premier Lee Hsien Loong, Indonesian President Joko Widodo, Prime Minister of Laos Thongloun Sisoulith, Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak and Cambodian Premier Hun Sen.
- On January 25, 2018, all these leaders attended India-ASEAN Commemorative Summit celebrating 25 years of ties between India and ASEAN countries.
- It is to be noted that Indian and ASEAN member countries together are home to almost 25% of global population.
- Besides, in past 17 years, Indian received investments worth $70 billion from ASEAN countries. This figure is more than 17 per cent of India’s total Foreign Direct Investment (FDI).
Bharat Parv being organized as part of Republic Day 2018 Celebrations
With an objective to generate a patriotic mood and promote the rich cultural diversity of India, Government of India has organised Bharat Parv event at the Red Fort, Delhi from 26thto 31st January, 2018.
- Rashmi Verma, Secretary, Ministry of Tourism inaugurated the event at 5.00 pm on January 26, 2018 (Republic Day). From 27thto 31st January, 2018, the event will be open for public (no entry fee) from 12 Noon to 10.00 pm.
- Ministry of Tourism is the nodal Ministry for this event.
- The event includes performances by the Armed Forces Bands, display of Republic Day Parade Tableaux, a Multi-Cuisine Food Court, Cultural Performances from different regions of India, a Craft Mela and Photo Exhibition by the Directorate of Advertising and Visual Publicity (DAVP).
President Confers Ashok Chakra (Posthumous) to Corporal Jyoti Prakash Nirala
On 26th January 2018, Ashok Chakra was awarded posthumously to Corporal Jyoti Prakash Nirala, Indian Air Force (IAF) commando, in New Delhi.
Corporal Jyoti Prakash Nirala – Ashok Chakra (Posthumous):
Corporal Jyoti Prakash Nirala sacrificed his life while shooting down two terrorists in Jammu and Kashmir.
- Ashok Chakra is India’s highest peacetime gallantry award. It is awarded for brave act or self-sacrifice away from battlefield. This is the third time, IAF receives Ashok Chakra.
- Jyoti Prakash Nirala was 31 years old. He hailed from Bihar. He is survived by his wife Sushma, a daughter, parents, and three sisters.
About Indian Air Force (IAF):
♦ Headquarters – New Delhi
♦ Chief of the Air Staff (CAS) – Air Chief Marshal Birender Singh Dhanoa
♦ Vice Chief of the Air Staff (VCAS) – Air Marshal Shirish Baban Deo
India gifts ambulances, educational materials to Nepal
On January 26, 2018, on the occasion of the India’s 69th Republic Day, the Indian mission in Nepal handed over 30 ambulances and six buses to various hospitals and non-profit charity organisations of Nepal.
- The handing over ceremony was held at the Indian Embassy in Kathmandu.
- Besides, book grants were also given to 41 educational institutions across Nepal.
- Students of various schools performed at the event. Indian Ambassador to Nepal, Manjeev Singh Puri hoisted the Indian flag at the embassy.
Women’s motorcycle team performed for the first time on Republic Day 2018
For the first time, a women contingent of the Border Security Force (BSF) performed motorcycle stunts during 69th Republic Day parade at Rajghat, New Delhi.
- As per the tradition BSF and the Army’s bike-borne ‘daredevils’ perform at the parade. But this time, members of the BSF’s women motorcycle team ‘Seema Bhawani’ enthralled the audience.
- Over 113 women performed various stunts such as salute to President, Side Riding, Fish Riding and Bull Fighting on 26 350cc Royal Enfield Bullet motorcycles.
- The team was led by sub-inspector Stanzin Noryang.
‘Firsts’ at 69h Republic Day Parade:
For the first time, 10 chief guests graced the Republic Day parade.
- ASEAN Flags were displayed through fly in the sky over Rajpath.
- One of the floats showed All India Radio displaying Prime Minister Modi’s monthly address “Mann Ki Baat”.
- The Income Tax Department float displayed Swachh Dhan Abhiyan, the anti-black money drive.