New Delhi: The Centre has issued a notice that will see only women contingent taking part in the main Republic Day military parade next year in the capital’s Kartavya Path. This will be the first time that only women will take part in the grand parade on January 26, 2024.
Not just the military parade, the marching bands, tableaux, and cultural performances will also have only women participants, the notice said.
In the notice, which was issued on March 1, the defence ministry said: “After detailed deliberations, it has been decided that Republic Day 2024 will have women participation, including contingents (marching and bands), tableaux and performances during the parade at the Kartavya Path.”
The defence ministry also sent letters to this effect to the home and cultural ministries as well.
Women have been participating in the Republic Day parade for decades. Even this year’s parade witnessed a significant women participation in the ceremonial event. Even the Border Security Force’s camel contingent had women BSF personnel taking part.
Interestingly, in the 99th edition of his monthly radio programme “Mann ki Baat”, the prime minister, Narendra Modi, had stated that Indian women have been playing a greater role in driving the country’s growth and prosperity. Therefore, the new development is seen in the light of the government’s push for highlighting women empowerment in the country.
It may be noted that recently, the Indian Army has inducted women officers in combat roles, starting from posting them in the Artillery Regiment. Women Indian Air Force pilots are already flying warplanes in combat roles while women officers are deployed in frontline Indian Navy warships for some years now.