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Sitar, santoor and tabla to accompany the military band during the Beating Retreat

Speed News Desk | Updated on: 14 February 2017, 1:48 IST

The 67th Republic Day celebrations next month promises to be a grand affair. After the marching parade on 26 January, there will be a three-day fair ending with the much-awaited Beating Retreat on 29 January - marking the end of the R-Day festivities.

The stars of the 2016 R-day celebrations will be the newly-introduced percussion instruments - the sitar, santoor and table - a change from the usual bugles, pipes and drums usually featured in the show by the colonial military band.

Raisina Hill will witness approximately 50 musicians playing classical Indian instruments at its south and north block ramparts.

During the annual event, all eyes are on the band, smartly dressed in red, olive green, orange and navy blue uniforms. Last year's crowd favourites were 'Vir Bharat', 'Chhana Bilauri', 'Jai Janam Bhumi' and 'Athulya Bharat'. It remains to be seen how the latest upgrade in the military band adds to the performance.

The parade has been cut down to 90 minutes and will feature retired military soldiers this time. The navy will showcase its efforts at integrating PM Narendra Modi's Make in India initiative with defence projects.

LED screens, spider-cams and surround sound systems will be installed so that the crowd can get a better view of the programme.

For the first time ever, the Beating Retreat will also feature central armed police forces and state police bands.

First published: 18 December 2015, 3:11 IST
 
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