India will be celebrating the valour and sacrifice of its army personnel on the occasion of Army Day on January 15, 2020 (Wednesday).
The Army Day celebrations, which began in 1949, will be observed for the 72nd time this year. The day is marked with parades in military establishments all across the country.
History and significance
Army Day is celebrated on January 15 every year. In 1949, the command of the Indian Army was handed over from General Sir Francis Butcher to Lieutenant General KM Cariappa on this day. Army Day, thus, marks the transfer of power from the British colonial rulers to Indians.
Who was Field Marshal Cariappa?
The first Indian Commander-in-Chief of the Indian Army, Cariappa hailed from Karnataka. Born on December 1898, his career spanned over three decades. He is also one of the two recipients of the title of Field Marshal of India, after Sam Manekshaw.
What’s different this year?
The Army Day parade in New Delhi this year will see a woman, Captain Tania Shergill, leading an all-men contingent. Last year, Captain Bhavna Kasturi had become the first woman officer to lead an all-men contingent on Republic Day.
How is Army Day celebrated?
The day is marked by a showcase of military strength. Bravery awards such as unit credentials and Sena medals are distributed to deserving personnel on this day. The main event is organised at Cariappa Parade Ground in Delhi Cantonment.
Army chief General Manoj Mukund Naravane will be chief guest at the Army Day celebrations this year. The parade will showcase various routines such as aerial stunts and bike pyramids.
The Delhi Cantonment Parade Ground was renamed as Cariappa Parade Ground after Field Marshal KM Cariappa in 2016. Tributes are also paid to Indian soldiers at the ‘Amar Jyoti Jawan’ at India Gate.