Pomp and pageantry marked the 71st Republic Day (R-Day) celebrations across Karnataka on Sunday amid tight security.

garuda force
Bengaluru: Garuda Force personnel patrol the Race Course Road amid high security arrangements in place in view of the upcoming Republic Day celebrations, in Bengaluru on Jan 24, 2020.IANS

In the state capital, Governor Vaujubhai R Vala hoisted the national flag and joined the huge gathering in rendering the national anthem played by the military band at the Manekshaw Parade Ground at the city centre.

IAF chopper showers flowers over VIP area

An Indian Air Force helicopter showered flowers over the VIP area of the ground, welcoming the Governor, Chief Minister BS Yediyurappa, a few cabinet ministers, dignitaries, invitees and the public at the sprawling venue under a clear sky.

"The Governor inspected the guard of honour, going around the ground in an open jeep standing, received salute from the contingents of the three services, and other security forces, including the National Cadet Corps (NCC) and Bharat Scouts and Guides and reviewed their marchpast," a state official told IANS.

The state's anthem, penned by Kuvempu, Padma Vibhusan recipient, was also sung in Kannada on the occasion.

In a 20-minute R-Day address in Hindi to the gathering, the Governor highlighted the vision and achievements of the southern state over the past five years since he assumed office in 2014.

After the military and police bands played patriotic songs, the audience was treated to an hour-long cultural programme.

About 2,000 boys and girls from state-run schools and junior colleges across the city enacted patriotic and cultural shows.

Dog squads of the military and the state police were star attractions, drawing special applause by the audience.

The Bruhat Bengaluru Mahnagara Palike (BBMP), which hosts the R-Day every year on behalf of the state government, participated for the first time, with a 50-member contingent of its civic staff in the march-past.

The state anti-terrorist squad (Garuda Force) demonstrated its preparedness to take on the enemy during a terror incident by performing a bus intervention exercise to rescue the commuters trapped in the vehicle.

A 20-member team of the Indian Army Service Corps, nicknamed Tornadoes, enthralled the audience with dare-devil stunts on military motorcycles.

The city police deployed 70 closed circuit television cameras (CCTVs) in and around the ground for surveillance, installed metal detectors and placed a bomb-detection squad.

According to reports from districts across the state, R-Day was celebrated with gaiety and patriotic fervour.