The teeth-chattering cold on Wednesday morning failed to dampen the spirits of the people coming to witness the Republic Day parade at the majestic Rajpath in New Delhi.
The people started arriving at the Rajpath as early as 5am in the morning, even as the parade begins at 10:30am.
Amid the ongoing Covid wave, the government has decided to significantly curtail the number of people who will physically attend the Republic Day celebrations this year.
All those attending the republic day parade must be fully vaccinated and children below 15 years of age will not be allowed to attend the function. Visitors must carry proof of vaccination and must adhere to all Covid-protocols, such as wearing face masks and maintaining social distancing.
People, who were standing in the queues, could be heard singing and chanting patriotic songs and slogans.
Amid chilly weather in the morning, the slogans “Bharat Mata Ki Jai” and “Vande Matram” injected the heat of patriotism in the veins of the people.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi paid homage at the National War Memorial, a monument to the soldiers who have made supreme sacrifice for the country, on Wednesday morning.
Modi was joined by Defence Minister Rajnath Singh and the three service chiefs as he paid tributes at a solemn ceremony.
Republic Day events commence with the homage ceremony at the war memorial.