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Beating Retreat 2023, marks the culmination of India’s grand Republic Day celebrations

The Beating the Retreat ceremony took place in New Delhi on Sunday, to mark the end of the country’s Republic Day celebration. 

What is the ‘Beating the Retreat’ ceremony?

Beating the Retreat ceremony marks the end of the four-day-long celebration of the Indian Republic Day. The ceremony is organized every year on January 29 at Vijay Chowk in New Delhi, close to the President’s residence, the Rashtrapati Bhavan. The ceremony includes parading of the national Colours and Standards and it is celebrated with great patriotic fervor. 

The ceremony has a long tradition and was started in the early 1950s when Major Roberts of the Indian Army took the initiative and developed a display of the massed bands. It marks a centuries-old military tradition, when the troops ceased fighting, sheathed their arms and withdrew from the battlefield, and returned to the camps at sunset at the sounding of the Retreat. Colours and Standards are cased and flags are lowered. The ceremony creates nostalgia for the times gone by.

Classical Ragas theme for Beating the Retreat ceremony, 2023

This year’s celebration was themed on classical ragas and tunes, wherein the military bands played foot-tapping Indian music. The occasion was graced by the President and Supreme Commander of the Armed Forces Smt Droupadi Murmu, and the bands of the Army, the Navy, the Air Force, the State Police, and the Central Armed Police Force (CAPF) participated.

The ceremony began with the massed band’s ‘Agniveer’, followed by tunes like ‘Almora’, ‘Kedar Nath, ‘Sangam Dur’, ‘Queen of Satpura’, ‘Bhagirathi’, ‘Konkan Sundari’ by pipes and drums band. While the Indian Air Force’s band played ‘Aprajey Arjun’, ‘Charkha’, ‘Vayu Shakti’, ‘Swadeshi’, while the band of the Indian Navy played ‘Ekla Cholo Re’, ‘Hum Taiyyar Hai’, and ‘Jai Bharati’.

The Indian Army played ‘Shankhnaad’, ‘Sher-e-Jawan’, ‘Bhupal’, ‘Agranee Bharat’, ‘Young India’, ‘Kadam Kadam Badhaye Ja’, ‘Drummers Call’, and ‘Ae Mere Watan Ke Logon’.

The event came to an enthralling end with the ever-popular tune of ‘Sare Jahan se Acha’.

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