INDIA celebrated the 70th year on January 26 since becoming a Republic amidst tight security in the national capital and elsewhere shocasing the traditional grand military parade on Rajpath. The colourful 90- minute parade commenced after Prime Minister Narendra Modi laid a wreath at the Amar Jawan Jyoti memorial at India Gate and along with the three chiefs of the armed forces paid homage to soldiers who laid down lives in combat. 22 tableaux of states and central departments were showcased with overall theme of Mahatma Gandhi’s life and philosophy during the 90-minute parade.President Ram Nath Kovind, the first lady and the South African President Cyril Ramaphosa ,who is the chief guest this year, arrived in a cavalcade escorted by 46 President’s Bodyguards. The open buggy traditionally used to escort the chief guest was done away this year owing to security concerns, news agency ANI reported. Ramphosa’s presence at the celebrations was significant as Gandhi’s 21-year stay in South Africa played a pivotal role in moulding him into the apostle of peace.Additionally, 2019 is being celebrated as the 150th birth anniversary of the Guarat born great nationalists.Display of Nari Shakti –power of women-was one of the major themes this year’s Republic Day with an all-women Assam Rifles Contingent created history by participating for the first time led by Major Khushboo Kanwar, daughter of a bus conductor.Lady officers took the centre stage as they led all contingents of the Navy, Indian Army Service Corps of Signala –transtable satellite terminal .Sikha Surabhi mesmerized the people on both sids of the historic Raj Path by her bike stunts along with her male counterparts. Another major highlight of the parade was participation of four Indian National Army (INA) veterans — Parmanand, Lalti Ram, Hira Singh and Bhagmal, all aged over 90 years, for the first time. The display of American howitzers M777, the Main Battle Tank (MBT) T-90 and indigenously developed Akash weapons system were also exhibited.Fifty-eight tribal guests from various parts of the country, 22 tableaux of states and central government departments and performance by school children were part of the Republic Day parade .Tight security cover was put in place. Indian Air Forces’s tableau, encouraging indegenisation, moves past the saluting dais during the Parade at Rajpath. Indian Air Forces’s tableau, encouraging indegenisation, moves past the saluting dais during the 70th Republic Day Parade at Rajpath in New Delhi. The voice of Bhupen Hazarika, popularly known as the ‘Bard of Brahmaputra’, resonated at the Rajpath as the Assam tableau, depicting the handloom of the state inspired by Mahatma Gandhi made its way during the celebrations, a day after the Bharat Ratna was posthumously awarded to him. A day after his name was announced for the Bharat Ratna award, former President Pranab Mukherjee called upon countrymen to strive to protect and preserve the foundational ethics of justice, liberty, equality and fraternity as enshrined in the Constitution. Followed by his securitymen, PM Modi started his walk after seeing off the Chief Guest, South African President Cyril Ramaphosa, and President Ram Nath Kovind.Many rushed to the makeshift barricades to greet him, others captured the moment on their cellphones.This was not the first time the Prime Minister has broken security cordon to greet the people. After last year’s Independence Day speech from the ramparts of the Red Fort, he had walked over to meet school children who had come for the occasion.Wishing fellow citizens on the 70th Republic Day, he urged them to strengthen their resolve to live up to the ideals of the Constitution.As many as 20 children awarded Bal Shakti Puraskar awarees were also part of the contingent which saluted the President of India. The ceremony culminated with the national anthem and release of balloons.PM Modi wearning an yellowish orange turban ocassionally greeted the spectators greeted . President M Venkaiah Naidu, esteemed judges, Nirmala Sitharaman, the country’s first full fledged lady Defence Minister, her Ministerial Colleagues ,former PM Dr Manmohan Singh, Senior bureaucrats and Rahul Gandhi , President of AICC ,sat through the function and were seen clapping as the participatants saluted the President.