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At Rajpath (King’s Avenue) thousands of people lined up to watch the colourful parade that also showcased the nation’s rich cultural heritage.
Security has been tightened in New Delhi and in other parts of the country including the north-east where several extremist groups have called for a boycott of the celebrations.
Anti-aircraft guns and the National Security Guard’s sharpshooters were deployed at various places at the parade venue in New Delhi.
The Indian President and the Prime Minister attended the show with the chief guest Japanese Premier Shinzo Abe.
President Pranab Mukherjee unfurled the Indian flag and took the salute of marching contingents on Sunday morning.
At Sunday’s parade, the army displayed its tanks and missile launchers, where indigenously designed and developed combat aircraft Tejas was the main highlight.
Smaller parades have also been held in the state capitals.
Internet search giant Google marked the day with a Google doodle. Daredevil motorcyclists, representing a unit of the armed forces, are seen carrying the doodle which has been painted in the colours of the Indian national flag.
India adopted its democratic constitution on January 26, 1950.
Microblogging site Twitter was abuzz with comments and greetings on the 65th Republic Day of the world’s largest democracy.
“Let’s not forget the ‘public’ in our republic!” said Indian journalist Rajdeep Sardesai.
‘Life without liberty is like a body without spirit’ – Khalil Gibran. Happy Republic Day,” tweeted Indian actor Farhan Akhtar.
“Happy 65th Republic Day to our fellow IBSA & BRICS member India,” wrote South African Foreign Ministry spokesperson Clayson Monyela.