Bengal celebrates Independence Day

Kolkata, Aug 15 : Tableaux depicting the vibrant folk art and the rich culture of Bengal were the highlights of an Independence Day parade Thursday, as West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee unfurled the tricolour at the Indira Gandhi Sarani here.

Carrying Chhau, Santhal and other tribal dancers, the tableaux wended their way through the normally busy road segment in maidan area of central Kolkata as youngsters enthusiastically showcased their talents through cultural presentations despite the sweltering heat.

Prior to the parade, Banerjee also inspected a guard of honour.

Banerjee later witnessed a march-past in which personnel of Kolkata Police, West Bengal Police, Rapid Action Force and school students took part.

Colourful tableaux were taken out by West Bengal Police, Eastern Frontier Rifles and various state departments and schools.

Last year, Banerjee had broken a tradition, in place since 1948, and hoisted the tricolour at the Sarani, also known as Red Road, instead of the state secretariat Writers' Buildings.

People burst firecrackers at midnight to usher in Independence Day.

The national flag was unfurled at most places in the city. Cultural programmes were held in schools and colleges and in various localities.

Malls across the eastern metropolis started filling up as the day wore on. Families were seen dressed in ethnic wear as they attended functions in neighbourhoods.

The Kolkata Metro Railways, the lifeline of the city, also marked the 67th Independence Day with a ceremony at the Metro Rail Bhawan.

Elaborate security arrangements, including setting up of check-posts at strategic locations, were made in and around the city for the day.

--IANS (Posted on 15-08-2013)

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