Republic Day celebrations will begin every year from January 23 instead of January 24 to include the birth anniversary of Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose, government sources said on Saturday. This is in line with the Modi government’s focus on celebrating/commemorating important aspects of our history and culture. The Narendra Modi-led government had earlier announced that Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose’s birth anniversary would be celebrated as Parakram Divas.

COVID-19 protocol for Republic day

The Ministry of Home Affairs on Tuesday informed that the Republic day celebration on 26 January will see increased restrictions in the regulations for COVID protocol. There will be a reduction in the number of guests amid rising cases of the novel coronavirus nationally. A contingent of five Central Asian nations, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, and Uzbekistan has arrived in Delhi to participate in the event. These nations will be the chief guests of the event. 
The officials have ordered that the route of the parade will be shorter, similar to last year. The marching contingent will end at the India Gate instead of Red Fort. All invitees attending parade at Rajpath on Republic Day have to strictly comply with the COVID-19 advisory that includes temperature check, sanitizer, mask, and social distancing. The decision on making the vaccine certificate mandatory for invitees will be decided in the next meeting.The official further informed that just like last year, the entry to the Republic Day parade will strictly be through the invitation card. Children below the age of 15 years will not be allowed at the parade. The official said that the seating arrangements could further be reduced as against 25,000 visitors allowed in the parade despite the seating capacity of 1 lakh spectators. Medical teams will be deployed outside each enclosure to ensure the health safety of visitors. To maintain social distancing, the entry gates to the parade will be increased.