The 67th Republic Day celebrations today were marked by many firsts, including a shorter parade, a French marching contingent and an ex-servicemen tableau.
French Army soldiers created history by marching down the Rajpath during the Republic Day parade, becoming the first foreign military contingent to take part in the celebrations.
Forty-eight members of ‘The Music of the Infantry’, a ceremonial band based in Lyon in France, played two military tunes at the parade as the spectators cheered them.
This year the duration of the parade was also curtailed from more than two hours to 90 minutes but the format remained the same.
The ceremonial parade also saw the first tableau from ex-servicemen where Army veterans showcased their role in nation building.
In a first, an-all women contingent of the CRPF marched on the Rajpath, replacing the traditional mail contingent from the force.
Also, for the first time, light machine guns were installed at 10 strategic points in New Delhi area.