New Delhi: “Nari shakti” and women empowerment dominated the theme of tableaux of Kerala, Karnataka, Tamil Nadu, Maharashtra and Tripura at the Republic Day parade here on Thursday.
Kerala presented the tableau of “Nari Shakti and Folk Traditions of Women Empowerment” that includes Kalaripayattu, a martial art with more than 2,000 years history, percussion and tribal traditions.
Kerala has the highest women’s literacy rate in the country and has the world’s largest women’s self-help network, Kudumbashree.
As many as 23 tableaux, 17 from states and Union Territories and six from various ministries and departments, rolled down the Kartavya Path as part of the Republic Day parade showing a plethora of cultures from across India and bringing the boulevard alive with song and dance. As the spectacle came to an end, Prime Minsiter Narendra Modi greeted the crowd amid cheers, after bidding adieu to President Droupadi Murmu and her Egyptian counterpart Abdel Fatah al-Sisi the chief guest at the event.
The parade was kicked off in Delhi by the guest contingent of the Egyptian Armed Forces, followed by a show of strength by the Armed Forces. Only made-in-India weapons were on display at the parade this year. Breaking from tradition, in a bid to get rid of colonial vestiges, an indigenous 105-mm Indian Field Guns (IFG) offered the 21-gun salute to President Murmu. In another first, the parade witnessed a contingent of women armed police battalion of CRPF. The BSF’s camel band and Delhi Police’s band also saw women constables participating for the first time.
This was also the first time an Egyptian president had been invited to be the chief guest of the event. Earlier, PM Modi paid tributes to martyrs at the National War Memorial. He was welcomed by Defence Minister Rajnath Singh. Extending his greetings to the nation on the 74th Republic Day, PM Modi earlier said, “We wish to move ahead unitedly to make the dreams of the great freedom fighters of the country come true.”