Bengaluru: India’s Republic Day celebrations this year will be a lot different. All thanks to the outbreak of Covid-19, it has forced the authorities to change the very way celebrations are held. 

Though it will have no chief guest, it will have other delightful displays of Rafale jets which were inducted earlier. Dakota aircraft will also be displayed. 

Flight Lieutenant Bhawana Kanth, a woman pilot will also be taking part in the celebrations as LCA and LCH will be displayed. 

As many as 122 soldiers from Bangladesh will also be taking part in the celebrations. It marks the 50th year of India’s victory over Pakistan, freeing East Pakistan, leading to the creation of Bangladesh. 

Ram Mandir Tableau: It is also interesting to note that the Uttar Pradesh tableau will feature the Ram mandir at Ayodhya. It was in November 2019 that the Supreme Court decided to hand over the site to Hindus, paving way for its construction. Prime Minister Narendra Modi took part in the bhumi pujan on August 5. Presently, the trust associated with it has begun fund collection drive for the same. 


Here’s more on Dakota and Rafale aircraft:


During the 1971 war, Dakota aircraft played a pivotal role in the liberation of Bangladesh and formation of Bangladesh Air Force and were used for air dropping Army troops in Bangladesh's Tangail.

Here are the salient features of Rafale aircraft:


1. They will be able to outgun and outrun Pakistani F-16 and JF-17 as well as the Chinese Chengdu J-20 fighters.

2. The upgrades range from radar enhancements, Israeli helmet-mounted displays and low-band jammers to towed decoy systems, 10-hour flight data recording and engine capability for "cold start" from high-altitude regions like Ladakh.

3. All the 36 Rafales, which can also deliver nuclear weapons, are slated to be delivered by end-2021. The Ambala and Hashimara airbases will house 18 each for the western and eastern fronts. The Rafales will significantly add to the qualitative and quantitative edge IAF already enjoys over the Chinese air force along the 3,488-km Line of Actual Control.

4. The IAF has also projected the operational need to go in for another 36 Rafales in the backdrop of its depleting number of fighter squadrons as well as both Hasimara and Ambala having the requisite infrastructure to house two squadrons each. But that decision is yet to be taken.

5. The top speed of the aircraft is 2223 km/hr, the maximum weight of the aircraft is 24,500 kg and the range is 3,700 km.

6. It is capable of ground support, aerial reconnaissance, in-depth strikes, interception and nuclear deterrence.