- United States, the United Kingdom, Argentina, Brazil, Fiji, Indonesia, Kyrgyzstan, The Maldives, Mauritius, Mozambique, Nigeria, Seychelles, the United Arab Emirates, and Uzbekistan.
- The defence secretary also stated that National Cadet Corps cadets from all districts of the country have been invited to the main event at Red Fort.
Defence Secretary Ajay Kumar announced on Wednesday that a home-grown howitzer gun will be used for the ceremonial 21-gun salute during the Independence Day ceremony at Red Fort for the first time.
The Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) created the Advanced Towed Artillery Gun System (ATAGS) as part of the government’s ‘Make in India’ initiative (DRDO).
Kumar stated that the ATAGS will perform the ceremonial 21-gun salute alongside the British guns that have been used in the past. According to the defence ministry, the initiative to use the gun will demonstrate India’s growing ability to develop arms and ammunition on its own.
The gun has been specially customised for the ceremony, with certain technical specifications changed.
According to the ministry, a team of scientists and artillery officers from the DRDO’s Armament Research & Development Establishment in Pune worked on the project to make use of the gun possible for the Independence Day ceremony.
The DRDO launched the ATAGS project in 2013 to replace older guns in the Indian Army with modern 155mm artillery guns.
This specialised gun system is compatible with C4I systems such as the Indian Army’s Artillery Combat Command and Control System known as Shakti for technical fire control, fire planning, deployment management, and operational logistics management.
The defence secretary also stated that National Cadet Corps cadets from all districts of the country have been invited to the main event at Red Fort. These cadets will be seated in a geographical formation of India’s map on the ‘Gyan Path’ in front of the Red Fort’s ramparts.
Kumar stated that the cadets will wear local attire to represent India’s cultural diversity and to spread the message of ‘Ek Bharat Shrestha Bharat.’
In continuation of the initiative launched on Republic Day 2022, he said, a section of society that is typically overlooked has been invited as special guests for Independence Day as well.
“Anganwadi workers, street vendors, mudra scheme borrowers, mortuary workers, and others fall into this category. They’ve been invited to the main event in Red Fort “Kumar stated.
Kumar stated that 26 officers and supervisors, as well as 127 cadets, have already arrived in India for the Independence Day celebrations from 14 countries, including the United States, the United Kingdom, Argentina, Brazil, Fiji, Indonesia, Kyrgyzstan, The Maldives, Mauritius, Mozambique, Nigeria, Seychelles, the United Arab Emirates, and Uzbekistan.
Apart from the main event at the Red Fort, the youth will visit cultural and historical sites in Delhi and Agra.