India’s historic 69th Republic Day Celebration


On Friday January 26th, India celebrated its 69th annual Republic Day. The holiday marks the anniversary of India’s constitution going into effect, replacing the Government of India Act as India’s primary governing document, and officially completing India’s transition to a fully independent republic. This date was chosen to commemorate India’s independence, as it also marked the anniversary of the Indian Declaration of Independence, made known on January 26th, 1930.

The occasion is annually celebrated with large, colourful parades across India, and this year was no different. Military officials, dancers, and floats filled the streets of Dehli, the nation’s capital, for the largest of these parades. This year’s Republic Day Parade did differ from previous years’, though.

For this year’s celebration, Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi invited political leaders from all 10 member nations of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations, or ASEAN. ASEAN member nations include the Philippines, Malaysia, Cambodia, Thailand, Singapore, Myanmar, Laos, Indonesia, Brunei Darussalam, and Vietnam. In the past, only one foreign political leader would be invited to attend the Dehli parade as an honourable guest, but this year’s expansion was a commemoration of the 25-year relationship between India and the ASEAN.

Also said to be part of India’s “Act East” policy, this gesture, and the India-ASEAN partnership, are said to be Indian efforts in curtailing Chinese influence.


Dominque Brodie