French soldiers on Tuesday took part in the Republic Day parade at the Rajpath, creating history as it was for the first time that a foreign army contingent took part in the celebrations.
The soldiers of the 35th Infantry Regiment, which was deployed in India between 1781 and 1784, was led by Lieutenant Colonel Paul Bury.The battalion has varied combat experiences, having served in Algeria, Africa, Iraq and Afghanistan, amongst other places.
French President Francois Hollande is the chief guest for the Republic Day parade this year, marking the boost in Indo-French ties .
The French contingent marched on the Rajpath and they followed Lt. Gen. Rajan Ravindran, General Officer Commanding, Delhi Area. They were preceded by a band, including 48 musicians, led by Major Jean-Claude Leberruyer.
The infantry contingent had 75 soldiers.French contingent was in India for joint exercise on counter-terrorism and counter insurgency with Indian soldiers as a part of “Shakti 2016” in Rajasthan.The 35th Infantry Regiment’s origin dates back to its raising in 1604 at Lorraine, France.