'Beating Retreat' ceremony to be held today

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NEW DELHI: The nation is set to witness as many as 26 performances, with the foot-tapping music, on this year’s ‘Beating the Retreat’ ceremony that will be held at the Vijay Chowk here on Monday

Bands from the Army, the Navy, the Air Force, the State Police and Central Armed Police Force (CAPF) will participate in the ceremony.

Out of the 26 performances, 25 tunes have been composed by Indian musicians and ‘Abide with me’ will be the only western tune to be performed here today.

The event will culminate with the tune of ‘Sare Jahan se Acha’.

18 Military Bands, 15 Pipes and Drums Bands from Regimental Centres and Battalions will be participating in the 2018 ‘Beating Retreat’ ceremony.

Major Ashok Kumar will be the principal conductor of the ceremony.

Army Military bands conductor will be Subedar Major SK Sharma and the Navy and Air Force band conductors will be Master Chief Petty Officer (Musician-I) Ramesh Chand and Junior Warrant Officer Ashok Kumar respectively.

The conductor of the State Police and CAPF bands will be Constable Bhim Singh.

Buglers will perform under the leadership of Subedar Jagdish Giri and pipes and drums bands will play under the instructions of Subedar Major Num Bahadur Gurung.

The ‘Beating Retreat’ ceremony is held here every year on January 29, marking the culmination of the four-day-long Republic Day celebrations.

The ceremony traces its origins to the early 1950s when Major Roberts of the Indian Army developed the unique ceremony of display by the massed bands.

‘Beating Retreat’ marks a centuries-old military tradition, when the troops ceased fighting, sheathed their arms and withdrew from the battlefield and returned to the camps at sunset at the sounding of the Retreat.

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