Beating Retreat Ceremony – UPSC Prelims

Beating Retreat Ceremony:
  • The Beating Retreat ceremony is organized every year after the Republic Day Celebration on January 29.
  • The programme is organized in front of Rashtrapati Bhawan on Raisina Road.
  • The ceremony marks a centuries old military tradition, when the troops ceased fighting, sheathed their arms and withdrew from the battlefield and returned to the camps at sunset at the sounding of the Retreat.
  • The chief guest during the ceremony is the President.
  • The ceremony began 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.
  • In India, the ceremony traces its origins to the early 1950s, when Major Roberts of the Indian Army indigenously developed the unique ceremony of display by the massed bands.
  • The ceremony is currently held by Armed Forces in the UK, US, Canada, New Zealand, Australia, and India, among others.

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