India's 71st Republic Day celebrations: As it happened

New Delhi: Brazilian President Jair Messias Bolsonaro on Sunday joined a select group of world leaders to have graced India's Repub...

New Delhi: Brazilian President Jair Messias Bolsonaro on Sunday joined a select group of world leaders to have graced India's Republic Day celebrations in the past few decades.

Bolsonaro, as the chief guest at the 71st Republic Day celebrations, watched the colourful parade at the majestic Rajpath along with President Ram Nath Kovind, Prime Minister Narendra Modi and a host of other leaders.

This is the third time that a Brazilian President was the chief guest at the Republic Day. The last time a Brazilian President was the chief guest was in 2004 when Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva attended the parade.

President Bolsonaro held talks with Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Saturday after which India and Brazil inked 15 agreements to ramp up cooperation in a wide range of areas, including oil and gas, and unveiled an action plan to further broadbase their strategic ties.

This is the first visit of President Bolsonaro to India after he assumed office on January 1, 2019.
Invitation to President Bolsonaro had drawn criticism from certain quarters with questions raised over a "controversial" figure like him being chosen to be the chief guest at the Republic Day parade.

Asked about the issue, Secretary (East) Vijay Thakur Singh had said last week that he is an elected leader in a democratic country which is an emerging power in the region and one with which India has strong and substantive relations.

Last year, South African President Cyril Ramaphosa was the chief guest at the Republic Day parade, while in 2018, leaders of all 10 ASEAN countries attended the Republic Day celebrations. 
-Source: News Agency

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Local Glob: India's 71st Republic Day celebrations: As it happened
India's 71st Republic Day celebrations: As it happened
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