Republic Day honours the date on which the Indian Constitution came into effect replacing the Government of India Act (1935) as the governing document of India. Many people throughout India celebrate Republic Day to commemorate the date when India’s constitution came into force -January 26, 1950.
26 November 1949, the Preamble to the Constitution of India bears testimony to the historic occasion. That said, the Constitution was only partially adopted that day. The full adoption came two months later.
This day represents the true spirit of independent India. Military parades, displays of military equipment and the national flag are on full display to mark the occasion. Large military parades are held in New Delhi and the state capitals. Representatives of the Indian Army, Navy and Air Force and traditional dance troupes take part in the parades.
Awards and medals of bravery are given to the people from the armed forces and also to civilians.
Some facts related to Republic Day:
- Though India became independent August 15, 1947 it did not have a permanent constitution.
- The drafting committee under the chairmanship of BR Ambedkar presented the constitution’s first draft to the national assembly November 4, 1947. The national assembly signed the final English and Hindi versions of the constitution January 24, 1950.
- It took almost two years, 11 months and 18 days for Ambedkar and his team to draft the Constitution.
- There are two copies of the Indian Constitution, one in English and one in Hindi and both of them are hand written.
- Dr Rajendra Prasad took oath as India’s first president at the Durbar Hall in the Government House, where he hoisted India’s national flag.