From the corridors of history: Lesser known facts about Republic Day

New Delhi, Jan 26: You feel immensely overjoyed upon seeing the tricolour being unfurled and National Anthem being played at every nook and corner on January 26. Irrespective of how many times you hear it, it never fails to give you the goosebumps. And, when it’s one of the most vital days of the year, Republic Day, one find it difficult to hold back the sense of pride.

As the nation is geared up to celebrate the day today with fireworks, parades and other festivities, it’s time to understand the relevance of Republic Day and how far the country has come in building itself into a strong nation.

Take a look at these 14 Republic Day facts that would certainly take you by surprise:

 

  1. The first Republic Day was celebrated three years after we got Independence that is, on January26, 1950. Actually, it took 2 years and 11 months for the Indian Constitution to be drafted.

  2. Dr. Rajendra Prasad, the first President of India took the Oath of Presidentship (at Dubar Hall of government house) for the first time on January 26th, 1950.

  3. Another fun fact about India is that it holds the record of having the world’s longest Constitution with 448 Articles in total.

  4. During the Republic Day parade, a Christian song “Abide With Me” is played and it is considered as one of Mahatma Gandhi’s favourite songs.

  5. President Sukarno, Indonesia’s first President attended Republic Day celebrations as the first Chief Guest.

  6. The importance of Republic Day could be estimated by the fact that it is a three day long affair with celebrations ending on 29th January with a Beating Retreat Ceremony.

  7. On January 26th, 1965, Hindi was declared the national language of India.

  8. On January 26, 1930, India pledged to fight for complete freedom or Purna Swaraj. And that is why, our freedom fighters wanted the date to hold the significance. Consequently, January 26, 1950 was chosen for India to become a sovereign state

  9. Our Constitution has the best aspects of the Constitution of other countries. Liberty, Equality and Fraternity was adopted from French Constitution while the Five-Year Plan came from the USSR Constitution.

  10. The first Republic Day parade was held at Major Dhyan Chand National Stadium and was attended by 15,000 civilians.

  11. One interesting fact about Indian Constitution is that it is handwritten in two languages- Hindi & English. It was signed by 308 members on January 24th, 1950 and became effective two days later.

  12. The eve of Republic Day is chosen to announce a majority of National awards like Bharat Ratna, Kirti Chakra, Padma Awards.

  13. Before the Indian Republic Day came into force, India followed Government of India Act, 1935 laid by the British Government.

  14. On the 1st Republic Day in the year 1950 at 10:30 AM, a 31-gun salute took place to congratulate our first President.