Republic Day parade National

26 tunes in Beating Retreat this year, no Bollywood numbers

Camel-mounted Border Security Force (BSF) jawans during rehearsals for the Beating Retreat Ceremony ahead of Republic Day, in New Delhi on January 24, 2022.

Camel-mounted Border Security Force (BSF) jawans during rehearsals for the Beating Retreat Ceremony ahead of Republic Day, in New Delhi on January 24, 2022.

There are 26 tunes that will be played at Beating Retreat this year on January 29, the same as last year but with some changes and with all tunes being Indian this time coinciding with 75 years of independence. However, there are no Bollywood numbers in the Republic Day parade of BTR, officials clarified after a video put out by the MyGovIndia handle on Twitter two days, of a practice session, created quite a stir.

The video, which also featured the Navy band, showed the Navy contingent dancing to the tune of the retro song ‘Monika’ and instantly generated a lot of debate that it was probably part of the Republic Day parade this year, which is a military ceremony. “What a sight! This video will definitely give you goosebumps! Are you ready to witness the grand 73rd Republic Day celebrations with us? Register now and book you e-Seat today!,” the message in the tweet along with the video said.

However, defence officials clarified that stated that the video which showed, soldiers dancing to the popular old tune holding their rifles in hand, was only on a lighter note during warm up in the winter morning before start of the practice session.

“The personnel wake up at 4am or so and reach Rajpath by 5:30-6 a.m. in the morning for practice in the peak winter chill. So they need to warm up and be prepared for the long, stringent practice session of several hours,” a defence official explained.

In the BTR this year, there are 44 Buglers, 16 Trumpeters and 75 Drummers in the BTR while in 2021 there were 60 Buglers, 17 Trumpeters and 60 Drummers. The Principal Conductor of the BTR this year is Cdr Vijay Charles Dcurz.

Talking of the tunes, another defence official said some tunes continue year on year while a few tunes are always changed. “It is a continuous process and over last several years there has been an attempt to bring in more Indian tunes,” the official stated.

It is for this reason that the ‘hymn Abide with me’, a favourite of Mahatma Gandhi, was dropped especially this year being 75th year of independence and all Indian tunes were chosen, officials had stated.

Instead the tune ‘ Ae mera watan ke logon’ composed by C Ramachandra and lyrics by Kavi Pradeep has been included as it has a far wider connect with the people of India is also easily recognized, officials said. “It is contextually far more appropriate to celebrate the valour and gallantry of the armed forces of India as compared to ‘Abide with Me’ and the song also evokes a strong sense of patriotism with all Indians,” a Government source added.


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Printable version | May 17, 2022 5:53:52 pm | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/26-new-tunes-in-beating-retreat-this-year-no-bollywood-numbers/article38320088.ece