This Republic Day, the government has taken extra measures to avoid any form of embarrassment.
The first among them is that the VVIP enclosure will now have a motorised glass roof to protect the dignitaries from rain and cold.
Last year, chief guest US President Barack Obama and his wife had to use umbrellas to shield themselves from steady drizzle during the Republic Day function.
“It was embarrassing to see the Obamas holding umbrellas during the parade. This glass roof will ensure such a thing does not happen again,” a report said.
The motorised roof can also be rolled off when the Air Force flypast will take place, giving dignitaries a clear view.
To get the top-notch coverage of the Republic Day parade, the public broadcaster Doordarshan will deploy a team of 100-odd personnel and will use its best equipment to cover the parade.
Also, it will use an overhead camera placed atop the VVIP enclosure to get the front row view.
“We are deploying 27 high-definition, state-of-the-art cameras at strategic locations. Fifteen of these cameras will be at Rajpath. Two hydraulic cranes – 120 metres and 80 meters high – will be used to broadcast top-angle shots,” Doordarshan’s Additional Director General Mahesh Joshi said.
French President Francois Hollande, who has arrived in Chandigarh, will be the chief guest at this year Republic Day celebrations. Heavy security has been deployed in the city.
City’s several areas will remain out of bounds for local residents. Also, the city administration have painted all walls along the roads that the dignitary will be taking. It also includes walls of private houses, palatial bungalows, government and other buildings.
“We are sprucing up the city. Road berms and walls are being repaired and painted, garbage and debris are being picked up. We will present them a very beautiful city during the visit of the French president and Modi-ji,” Chandigarh mayor Arun Sood had said.
What else? For the first time, French soldiers will march down the Rajpath on Republic Day. No foreign army has ever participated in India’s Republic Day parade before.
It is reported that 56 French soldiers will take part in the march in presence of French President Francois Hollande.
In an another first, all-women stunt contingents will participate in the parade. The contingent of the Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) will display their motorcycle riding skills and various other stunts.
The contingent was created in 2014 and the riders have been working very hard for this day.
Also, after 26 years, Indian army dogs, who have time and again saved lives of many soldiers, will march in the Republic Day parade.
A notable exception in this Republic Day celebration will be that no paramilitary forces–CRPF, Indo-Tibetan Border Force, Sashastra Seema Bal– will take part in the parade.