India is celebrating its 73rd Republic Day today. A set of guidelines issued by the Delhi Police state that those attending the Republic Day parade must be fully vaccinated against Covid-19 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. As many as 21 tableaux – the floats of 12 states and nine ministries or government departments – will be part of the Republic Day parade.
Addressing the nation on the eve of 73rd Republic Day, President Ram Nath Kovind on Tuesday urged the countrymen to follow the precautions suggested by the scientists and experts in the fight against the Covid spread. “In the fight against the Covid pandemic, it has now become a sacred national duty of every citizen to follow the precautions suggested by our scientists and experts. We have to discharge this duty till the crisis is behind us,” he said.
“As the pandemic is still widespread, we must remain alert and not let our guard down. The precautions we have taken till now have to be continued. Wearing masks and maintaining social distancing have been essential parts of Covid appropriate behaviour,” the President said.
On the eve of the Republic Day, the Centre on Tuesday announced the list of recipients of the Padma awards. Among other honours, first Chief of Defence Staff late General Bipin Rawat and former Uttar Pradesh chief minister Kalyan Singh have been awarded the Padma Vibhushan. The Padma Bhushan will be conferred on Congress leader Ghulam Nabi Azad, Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella, Alphabet CEO Sundar Pichai and SII MD Cyrus Poonawalla. In a statement, former West Bengal CM Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee says he will not accept the Padma Bhushan award.
Source: The Indian Express