30th January, 2023 POLITY AND GOVERNANCE
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- The Beating Retreat Ceremony was held at the end of the four-day-long Republic Day celebrations in Vijay Chowk, Delhi.
- It is a military ceremony that was performed for the first time in India in the 1950s.
- The ceremony consists of musical performances by the bands.
- According to the Union Ministry of Culture website “the origin of the Beating Retreat ceremony, traces its origin to the early 1950s when Major Roberts of the Indian Army indigenously developed this unique ceremony of display by the massed bands”.
- The website mentioned that the idea was inspired by a centuries-old military tradition when the troops ceased fighting, sheathed their arms and withdrew from the battlefield to return to their camps at sunset at the sound of the Retreat.
- The earliest evidence of this ceremony was found in 17th-century England when King James II ordered his troops to beat drums, lower flags and organize a parade to announce the end of a day of combat.
- The ceremony at that time was called ‘watch setting’ and took place at sunset after firing a single round from the evening gun.
- The ceremony was attended by;
- The President of India, who is also the Supreme Commander of the Armed Forces.
- Prime Minister of India.
- Defense Minister of India.
- The President of the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) president.