Pride in heart, memories in soul, the mighty military marches ahead
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With the three service chiefs in attendance, Manmohan Singh was greeted on arrival at Rajpath. The republic day celebrations kicked off with PM paying tribute to the martyrs. India's rich cultural heritage and military powers were on display at the 64th Republic Day parade today on the 8km stretch from Rajpath to Red Fort.
The three service chiefs lead the parade ahead. The impressive march-past was watched by chief guest, Bhutan king Jigme Khesar Namgyel Wangchuck, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, vice president Hamid Ansari, defence minister AK Antony, UPA Chairperson Sonia Gandhi and top political and military brass.
Police and other impeccably attired para-military forces turned the celebration immortal. Helicopters gun ships kept an eye on proceeding to ensure against any untoward incident.
A thick security blanket was thrown around the capital today with thousands of armed personnel keeping a tight vigil to thwart any possible terror strike or any untoward incident during the Republic Day celebrations.
Snipers with sophisticated arms were on high-rises while hundreds of police personnel kept the eight km parade route from Rajpath to Red Fort under their watch to ensure that the event passed peacefully.
Around 25,000 police personnel, including those from paramilitary forces and sharpshooters from the elite National Security Guards (NSG) were deployed across the city in the run-up to the national celebrations.
Policemen kept a tab on the visuals from over 160 CCTVs between Rajpath and Red Fort, the route of the parade.
Mobile hit teams, anti-aircraft guns and sharpshooters of the NSG were also on the job at various places while paramilitary and Delhi Police commandos kept a close watch along the route.
"There was a special emphasis on anti-sabotage checks, access control measures and intelligence coordination. The entire route of the parade was covered by special security and anti-terror arrangements.