In pleasant weather, rendered cool by overnight showers, the citizens of Madras celebrated the ninth anniversary of Independence with unprecedented enthusiasm, a fillip to which was given by the presence of the President, Dr. Rajendra Prasad, in their midst and his participation in the principal event of the day, the ceremonial parade at the Island Ground, witnessed by over a lakh of people. The President took the salute at the march-past, in which units from the Defence Services, the Special Armed Police, the Malabar Special Police, the National Cadet Corps as well as Scouts and Guides participated. All roads led to the Island Ground since early morning. Men, women and children from all parts of the city began pouring into the spacious arena. The traffic restrictions, necessitated by the state drive, did not dampen the enthusiasm of the citizens eager to participate in the celebrations and to witness the impressive parade. Arriving by car from the Raj Bhavan, Guindy, the President alighted in front of the Gemini Studios, where a special mantapam had been erected. The President's mounted bodyguards gave him the salute, after which he boarded the state coach drawn by six brown horses.