India’s military prowess and cultural diversity were on show as the country celebrated its 73rd Republic Day on Wednesday.

Every year, the Republic Day celebrations begin on January 24. However, this year, they began on January 23 to mark the 125th birth anniversary of freedom fighter Subhash Chandra Bose.

The parade in Delhi, which started at 10.30 am, featured 21 tableaux, a 75-aircraft flypast by the Indian Air Force and cultural performances by over 480 dancers from across the country.

Camel-mounted Border Security Force contingent march past the Rajpath in New Delhi. (Credit: Kamal Kishore/PTI)
A contingent of the Indian Coast Guard takes part in the parade. (Credit: MyGovIndia/Twitter)

Given the rising cases of coronavirus, the Delhi Police have issued a set of guidelines for the citizens willing to attend the programme, The Indian Express reported. Only fully vaccinated audience members were allowed at the event. Children aged 15 and below were not given entry.

Delegates gather to witness the ceremonial Republic Day Parade in Delhi. (Credit: Kamal Kishore/PTI)

Of the total 21 tableaux showcased at the parade, 12 belonged to the states and nine to ministries or government departments, according to The Indian Express.

Floats on women empowerment, freedom fighter Subhash Chandra Bose, guiding principles of Lok Adalats, among others were featured during the parade. Several states also displayed their heritage and demographic through their tableaux.

A tableau on women empowerment was presented by the department of post. (Credit: MyGovIndia/ Twitter)
The public works department presented a tableau on freedom fighter Subhash Chandra Bose. (Credit: MyGovIndia/ Twitter)
A tableau on five guiding principles of Lok Adalats – accessible, definitive, affordable, equitable and timely justice for all – was showcases at the parade. (Credit: MyGovIndia/Twitter)

Last week, West Bengal and Tamil Nadu had written to the prime minister after their state tableaux were rejected by the Centre.

Tamil Nadu Chief Minister MK Stalin had said that he was “deeply disappointed” after the Ministry of Defence rejected the state’s Republic Day tableau proposal. He added that the state had chosen the theme “Tamil Nadu in the Freedom Struggle” in line with the Centre’s call.

Meanwhile, West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee had said that she was “shocked and hurt” by the Centre’s decision to reject the tableau proposed by the state government for the Republic Day parade.

She said she was “baffled” that Union government rejected the tableau without giving any reasons or justifications.

A tableau by Arunachal Pradesh was based on theme 'Anglo Abor Adiverse' which highlights the resistance of indigenous people in the state. (Credit: MyGovIndia/Twitter)
The tableau by Goa featured diverse and natural landmarks. (Credit: MyGovIndia/ Twitter)

Women members of the Border Security Force showcased their acrobatic skills, while dancers performed the “Vande Bharatam Nritya”.

BSF women personnel showed acrobatic skills at the parade. (Credit: MyGovIndia/ Twitter)
Dancers perform the "Vande Matram Nritya". (Credit: MyGovIndia/ Twitter)

The Indian Air Force conducted a flypast over Rajpath.

Five Rafale jets fly in arrowhead formation. (Credit: MyGovIndia/ Twitter)

Meanwhile, Prime Minister Narendra Modi paid tributes to the martrys at the National War Memorial.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi at the National War Memorial. (Image credit: BJP/ Twitter)

On Friday, the ceremonial flame at war memorial Amar Jawan Jyoti was extinguished for the first time since 1972. The flame was was merged with the torch at the National War Memorial, inaugurated by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in 2019. The new memorial is situated less than a kilometre away on the same stretch as the Amar Jawan Jyoti at Delhi’s India Gate.

Several Opposition leaders and citizens had criticised the Centre’s decision to extinguish the flame.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi at the National War Memorial. (Image credit: BJP/ Twitter)

Also, several states and security personnel celebrated the Republic Day by organising parades and showcasing floats.

Railway Protection Force personnel take part in the Republic Day Parade in Secunderabad. (Image credit: Noah Seelam/AFP)
Army personnel stand in formation during the Republic Day in Mumbai. (Credit: Sujit Jaiswal/AFP)
A tableaux by the agriculture department in Patna. (Credit: PTI)
Indo Tibetan Border Police personnel celebrate Republic Day at 11,000 feet in Mana valley in Uttarakhand. (Credit: PTI)