A strong and resurgent India is celebrating its 58th Republic Day on 26 January, 2007. This year's parade will highlight the nations achievements in various fields, the military prowess, scintillating display of air power as also India's rich and diverse cultural heritage.
The armed forces will showcase the Brahmos supersonic cruise missiles, T-72 tanks, Bofors, multi-barrel rocket launching system Pinaka, tactical control reporter radar, mobile decontamination system, indigenous PMS bridge vehicle, mobile base transceiver station, army wide area network (AWAN), BMP-II with TISAS, bridge laying tanks, ex-tanks, NAG, Akash, weapon locating radar will be some of the major attractions of this years Republic Day parade.
Indian Air Force will showcase unmanned aerial vehicle Searcher-II and Indra-II radar. The parade ceremony will commence at the Amar Jawan Jyoti at India Gate where the prime minister, Dr Manmohan Singh will lead the nation in paying homage to the martyrs by laying a wreath.
An eternal flame burns at the Amar Jawan Jyoti to commemorate the indomitable courage of our armed forces personnel who have made the supreme sacrifice in the service of the motherland. The Amar Jawan, the immortal soldier, is symbolised by a reversed rifle topped by a helmet.
As per tradition, the president Dr A P J Abdul Kalam, will unfurl the national flag and take the salute and this year's chief guest in the parade will be Vladimir Vladimirovich Putin, president of the Russian Federation.
The parade will be commanded by Major General P C Bhardwaj, general officer commanding, Delhi Area, with Brig Harvinder Pal Singh Dhillon as the parade second-in-command. The marching contingents of Army will be from the Parachute Regiment, Brigade of the Guards, Rajput Regiment, Jat Regiment, Sikh Regiment, Dogra Regiment, Bihar Regiment, JAKLI Regiment and the Territorial Army (Maratha LI).
The marching contingents of navy and the air force will consist of 144 and 148 soldiers respectively and four officers each.
For the first time in the history of Republic Day celebrations a foreigner will lead a unit of the army contingent at the annual parade on 26 January. Captain Tunku Ismail Ibrahim, grandson of the Sultan of Johar, a state in Malaysia, will lead the mounted column of the Jaipur-based 61st cavalry, which will form part of the army contingent at the 105-minute long parade.
The marching contingents of para-military and other auxiliary civil forces will include contingents from Border Security Force, Assam Rifles, Coast Guard, Central Reserve Police Force, Indo-Tibetan Border Police, Central Industrial Security Force, Sashastra Seema Bal, Railway Protection Force, Delhi Police, National Cadet Corps and National Service Scheme. The camel-mounted band and contingent of the BSF will also participate.
Tableaux from 26 states and central ministries and departments will present the varied historical, architectural and cultural heritage of the country. They will also showcase country's progress in different fields. Tableaux of military world games - 2007, border surveillance, remount veterinary corps and networking for efficiency and combat power will also be the major attraction of the parade.
Twenty-Four children, who have been selected for the National Bravery Award 2006 will also participate in the parade riding on caparisoned elephants. In the childrens pageant section, more than 1,200 boys and girls drawn from different school of Delhi and various cultural zones will present dances and other programmes.
The motorcycle display by the Shwet Ashw of the Corps of Military Police will be a major attraction of the parade. They will perform breathtaking stunts in a synchronised and synergistic display of mind, body and machine coordination.
The grand finale of the parade will be a spectacular flypast by the IL-78 Air-to-Air Refuellers and Sukhoi 30 MKI fighter aircraft in Tanker formation, followed by series of Jaguar and MIG 29 fighter aircraft in Arrowhead formation.