Amid rift, KCR skips Republic Day celebration at Raj Bhavan
Hyderabad, Jan 26: Amid the growing rift, Telangana Chief Minister K. Chandrasekhar Rao skipped Republic Day celebrations at the Raj Bhavan here on Thursday. Governor Tamilisai Soundararajan unfurled the national flag with a ceremonial parade as ordered by the state high court.
KCR, as the Chief Minister is popularly known, unfurled the national flag at his official residence Pragati Bhavan. The Governor received the salute by personnel of the Telangana State Special Police. Three platoons participated in the parade in the premises of Raj Bhavan.
Chief Secretary Santhi Kumari, Director General of Police Anjani Kumar were also in attendance. For a second consecutive year, Republic Day celebrations were held at the Raj Bhavan on the direction of the state government.
This has reportedly irked the Governor, who has been accusing the government of not following the protocol. Similar orders by the statement government last year citing Covid-19 protocol had angered the Governor. She went on to read a speech not approved by the state government, kicking up a row between Raj Bhavan and Pragati Bhavan.
This year, the Telangana High Court asked the state government to organise the Republic Day celebrations in a befitting manner as per the guidelines of the Centre.
The court directed that there should be a ceremonial parade as part of the celebrations but left the choice of the venue to the government. The court passed the orders on a petition filed by a citizen, who was aggrieved by the government's decision to not hold Republic Day parade.
The petitioner stated that he used to take his family to the Parade ground and show them Republic Day celebrations so that some sense of patriotism is inculcated in young minds. In 2020 and 2021, the Governor unfurled the national flag at Republic Day celebrations held in the historic Public Gardens, adjacent to the State Assembly in the heart of the city. The Chief Minister and his cabinet colleagues had attended the event.
Before 2020, the Republic Day parade used to be held at Parade Grounds in Secunderabad. The main event used to comprise march past, parade review by the chief guest, tableaux and cultural programmes by school children
The venue was shifted following the decision of the chief minister that the Independence Day, Republic Day and State Formation Day celebrations be held in a place that would not cause any inconvenience to the people.
After formation of Telangana in 2014, KCR had shifted the venue of Independence Day parade from Parade Grounds to the historic Golconda Fort to highlight the rich cultural heritage of Telangana.