No schoolchildren, pruned visitor record, cops in PPE: Why this Independence Day might be not like every other

By: Express Web Desk | New Delhi |

Updated: August 14, 2020 10:20:33 am

Independence Day, 74th Independence Day, Independence Day 2020, 2020 Independence Day, India news, Indian ExpressBauls of Bengal performs throughout full gown rehearsal for Independence Day  on the Red Road in Kolkata on August 13, 2020. (Express picture: Partha Paul)

The Independence Day, which is historically marked with pomp and gaiety, might be a subdued and restricted affair this yr owing to the circumstances created by the Covid-19 pandemic. Although the 74th I-Day might be celebrated in a fashion befitting the event, it’ll witness a truncated record of dignitaries, chairs as a substitute of rugs for seating in a number of areas, police in private protecting tools, and no participation of schoolchildren.

Read | ExplainSpeaking: Waiting for PM Narendra Modi’s Independence Day speech

“At the Red Fort, as a substitute of the 900-1000 invitees yearly, round 250 folks might be current because the Prime Minister addresses the nation,” an official with the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) had informed The Indian Express. The ultimate record might be ready by the Defence Ministry.

Later within the afternoon, through the ‘At Home’ operate in Rashtrapati Bhavan, the main target might be on India’s “Corona Warriors”, with invites prone to be prolonged to medical professionals and key figures within the well being sector.

Independence Day, 74th Independence Day, Independence Day 2020, 2020 Independence Day, India news, Indian ExpressIndependence Day, 74th Independence Day, Independence Day 2020, 2020 Independence Day, India news, Indian Express Uttar Pradesh State meeting constructing and Lok Bhawan illuminated forward of independence day celebration in Lucknow on Thursday, August 13, 2020. (Express picture by Vishal Srivastav)

This might be Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s seventh I-Day speech from the ramparts of the Red Fort. The ceremony on Saturday morning shall include a guard of honour by the armed forces and the Delhi Police to PM Modi, unfurling of the nationwide flag, firing of the 21-gun salute, speech by the PM, singing of the nationwide anthem instantly after his speech, and launch of tri-coloured balloons on the finish.

Multilayered safety preparations in place

A safety ring, together with NSG snipers, elite SWAT commandos and kite catchers, might be positioned across the Red Fort from the place PM Modi will deal with the nation. Over 300 cameras have been put in for safety and their footage is being monitored around the clock, information company PTI quoted the police as saying. Around 4,000 safety personnel might be deployed on the Red Fort and they’re going to stand in adherence with social distancing norms. No motion of trains from 6.45 am to eight.45 am might be allowed on specific tracks close to the Fort resulting from VVIP motion.

Read | Independence Day 2020: History, importance and significance of the day

The Red Fort has already been closed for public forward of the Independence Day celebrations. A complete of eight roads– Netaji Subhash Marg, Lothian Road, SP Mukherjee Marg, Chandni Chowk Road, Nishad Raj Marg, Esplanade Road and its Link Road to Netaji Subhash Marg, Ring Road from Rajghat to ISBT and Outer Ring Road from ISBT to IP flyover — might be closed for common public from Four am to 10 am.

Independence Day, 74th Independence Day, Independence Day 2020, 2020 Independence Day, India news, Indian ExpressIndependence Day, 74th Independence Day, Independence Day 2020, 2020 Independence Day, India news, Indian Express Full gown rehearsal at Government College of S A S Nagar, in Punjab, on Thursday, August 13, 2020. (Express picture by Jasbir Malhi)

Earlier, the Delhi Police had suggested invitees to chorus from attending the occasion in the event that they skilled any Covid symptom within the final two weeks and didn’t go for a take a look at. The police had additionally requested them to comply with Covid-related tips issued by the house and well being ministries through the I-Day celebrations.

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Over 350 Delhi Police personnel, who might be a part of the guard of honour, have been quarantined as a precautionary measure. These personnel of the pressure of all ranks — from constable to deputy commissioner of police — have been quarantined at a newly constructed police colony in Delhi Cantonment.

Flying of sub-conventional aerial platforms like para-gliders, para-motors, grasp gliders, UAVs, micro mild plane, remotely piloted plane, sizzling air balloons, small dimension powered plane, quadcopters or para-jumping from plane and so on. are prohibited over the jurisdiction of National Capital Territory of Delhi as much as August 15, police had stated.

Independence Day, 74th Independence Day, Independence Day 2020, 2020 Independence Day, India news, Indian ExpressIndependence Day, 74th Independence Day, Independence Day 2020, 2020 Independence Day, India news, Indian Express Full gown rehearsal forward of 74th Independence Day at Parade Ground in Chandigarh’s Sector 17, on Thursday, August 13, 2020. (Express Photo by Kamleshwar Singh)

Guidelines to state govts, UT admns

In tips issued to the chief secretaries of all state governments and Union Territory administrations at totally different ranges, the Home Ministry has underlined that every one programmes needs to be organised in a approach that giant congregation is prevented and expertise is utilized in a very best method. The web-casting of occasions has been inspired to achieve out to folks at giant who might be unable to take part. It additionally urged them to comply with preventive measures akin to sustaining bodily distancing, sporting masks, correct sanitisation, and avoiding giant congregations.

As per the rules, on the state stage, a ceremony within the morning (after 9 am) within the state and Union territory capitals, consisting of hoisting of the nationwide flag by the chief minister, taking part in of the nationwide anthem, presentation of guard of honour by the police, together with paramilitary forces, house guards, NCC, scouts speech by the Chief Minister; and singing of the nationwide anthem.

Read | I-Day: Covid warriors among invitees, no march-past

“It would even be acceptable that COVID-19 warriors like docs, well being staff, sanitation staff are invited within the ceremony as a recognition of their noble service in ght in opposition to Covid-19 Pandemic,” the advisory stated. “Some individuals cured from COVID-19 an infection may additionally be invited.”

Independence Day, 74th Independence Day, Independence Day 2020, 2020 Independence Day, India news, Indian ExpressIndependence Day, 74th Independence Day, Independence Day 2020, 2020 Independence Day, India news, Indian Express Police personnel put on masks whereas performing the total gown rehearsal in Lucknow on Thursday, August 13, 2020. (Express picture by Vishal Srivastav)

The same ceremony also needs to be held on the district, sub-division or block stage and panchayat headquarters or giant villages. While the nationwide flag on the district stage will be hoisted by a state minister or district Justice of the Peace, a sub divisional Justice of the Peace and village head will do the identical on the sub-divisional stage and the panchayat stage, respectively.

As regards to holding of ‘At Home’ reception at Raj Bhawan and Raj Niwas, the matter is left to the discretion of the Governors and Lieutenant Governors.

Read | In a first, Indian tricolour to be hoisted at iconic Times Square in New York

The efficiency of police and navy bands could also be recorded at locations of historic significance related to Independence motion; and recorded variations thereof could also be displayed via giant screens and digital media, throughout public capabilities and on social media, the advisory stated.

Independence Day, 74th Independence Day, Independence Day 2020, 2020 Independence Day, India news, Indian ExpressIndependence Day, 74th Independence Day, Independence Day 2020, 2020 Independence Day, India news, Indian Express Police personnel throughout gown rehearsal of Independence Day celebrations at Guru Nanak Dev Stadium in Ludhiana, on Thursday, August 13, 2020. (Express Photo by Gurmeet Singh)

‘Waving of nationwide flags from balconies, illumination of govt buildings’

Among the actions the Home Ministry has prompt for the day embody planting of timber; inter-school/inter-college debates on digital platforms; on-line quiz contests/patriotic essay writing and poetry competitions; launching of any vital scheme, singing patriotic songs/delivering patriotic talks by chosen boys/ladies on social media; illumination of presidency buildings/state bhawans and so on; thematic webinars; on-line marketing campaign by NSS and NYKS centred on patriotic themes; or every other exercise deemed acceptable by the state authorities/ UT administration befitting the event.

Read | I-Day advisory: No large assemblies; Tricolour hoisting at balconies, rooftops

The ministry has additionally prompt sound exhibits/lighting of vital public buildings, waving of nationwide flags by folks at rooftops/balconies, propagating nationwide integration messages/songs via social media platforms to have a good time the day. It additionally stated that it will be acceptable that the theme of ‘Atma Nirbhar Bharat’ introduced by PM Modi was suitably unfold via social media.

With PTI inputs

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