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COVID-19 scare: No foreign chief guest to take part in Republic Day

For the second year in a row, no foreign chief guest will take part in India’s Republic Day in the view of the third wave of COVID-19.

The news: The Centre will not reconsider the tableau of West Bengal and Tamil Nadu for the Republic Day parade, senior officials of the Defence Minister confirmed on Tuesday.

What they are saying:

  • Tamil Nadu’s tableaux could not make it into the final list of 12 tableaux selected for participation in the Republic Day Parade said Defence Minister Rajnath Singh.
  • The tableaux from the State government of Tamil Nadu has been selected for participation in R-Day during 2017, 2019,2020, & 2021, Defence Minister Rajnath Singh added.
  • “This year the list of invitees include construction workers, sanitation workers, front line workers and auto-rickshaw drivers. The purpose is to give an opportunity to every person in society. The invitees have to be fully vaccinated,” sources in the Union Ministry of Defence said.
  • The Republic Day celebrations will begin from January 23 from this year, instead of January 24, in the honour of Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose.
  • “Due to COVID-19 restrictions, the number of visitors will be substantially curtailed this year. We are looking at a range of 5,000-8,000 people but we have not yet finalised that. Last year, 25,000 visitors had taken part,” senior defence ministry officials told a leading news agency.
  • India on Tuesday saw a single-day spike of 2,58,089 new coronavirus infections, while the fatality count rose to 4,86,761 with 310 more deaths in the last 24 hours.

What Delhi police said: The operations of sub-conventional aerial platforms like para-gliders, para-motors, hang gliders, UAVs, UASs, microlight aircraft, remotely piloted aircraft, hot air balloons, small-size powered aircraft, quadcopters or para jumping from aircraft among others over the jurisdiction of the National Capital Territory of Delhi has been prohibited in the city from January 20 in view of Republic Day celebrations on January 26, and doing so shall be punishable.

  • The order will come into force from January 20 and remain in effect till February 15.
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