New Delhi: The Republic Day parade, which US President Barack Obama will attend as chief guest, will last a little less than two hours.
The parade, that starts at Rajpath and goes upto Red Fort covering a distance of about eight kilometres, will begin after President Pranab Mukherjee, along with the chief guest, arrives in a convoy from Rashtrapati Bhavan at around 10 AM.
According to the programme, the duration of the parade will be about 107 minutes in which 25 tableaux from various states and central government departments on developmental, cultural and historical themes will participate.
Some of the tableaux on cultural themes will have integrated folk dances.
On the morning of January 26, Prime Minister Narendra Modi will lay wreath at the Amar Jawan Jyoti at India Gate. An inter-services guard will give salute and thereafter, a two- minute silence will be observed. NCC cadets will be seated in a special enclosure near India Gate.
The President and the guest will drive in a convoy straight to Rajpath and take salute at ceremonial march-past which will consist of units drawn from the three defence services, paramilitary forces, other auxiliary civil forces, NCC and a contingent of ex-servicemen. BSF camel contingent will be included in the parade.
Four helicopters would precede the parade commander. Lead helicopter will carry national flag and the other three copters would carry services flags and echelon aircraft would shower flower petals.60 tribal guests from various parts of the country have been invited to witness the Republic Day celebrations.
National bravery award-winning children seated in open jeeps will also form part of the cultural pageant. Four cultural presentations of children from Delhi schools, two groups of children from west zone cultural centre, Udaipur and south-central zone cultural centre, Nagpur, will form part of the children's component of the parade.
Each group of children will give a performance of about two minutes in front of the Presidential dais.After the national anthem and before the departure of the President, balloons of three colours of the national flag would be released from different locations at Rajpath.
A flypast by Indian Air Force, subject to weather conditions, at the end will provide the grand finale to the Republic Day parade. There will be illumination of the buildings--Rashtrapati Bhavan, North and South Blocks, the Parliament House and India Gate.