Today, January 26, marks Republic Day in India, an annual event commemorating when the Constitution of India came into place on January 26, 1950.
Various celebrations are held throughout the country, with the largest taking place at the capitol (New Delhi). The highlight of the celebration is a parade that is held in New Delhi at the Rajpath with military members dressed in their finest attire, a favorite of everyone in attendance and watching on television from afar.
There is also always a state guest invited each year; this year it is Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra of Thailand. The President starts the ceremonies with a symbolic gesture by laying a headdress at the Indian Gate in memory of all Indian military members who have given up their lives for their country.
Following the grand parade are tributes to each state which portray the vast diversity of cultures through various displays such as poems, songs, and dance. The ceremonies are ended with the Beating Retreat, played by the Indian Army, Navy, and Air Force; a moving way to end such an important day.
Being one of the three national holidays in India, it is a favorite among all; Republic Day ignites strong patriotic feelings among everyone towards their country allowing each person to feel they are a part of something bigger than just themselves.
Enjoy your Republic Day celebrations…Happy India Republic Day 2012!