Low-key Independence Day celebrations in TN, but tight security in place

Covid-19 has hit many events this year and the forthcoming Independence Day celebrations are no exception. Though the day will be celebrated with grandeur, gaiety, and enthusiasm, large gatherings will not be allowed in view of the pandemic.

The Tamil Nadu government on Thursday requested the public not to attend Independence Day events due to Covid-19. Chief Minister Edappadi K Palaniswami will hoist the tricolour on the ramparts of Fort St George and honour the corona frontline staff.

“Freedom fighters, the general public, students and children participate in huge numbers every year. Considering the extraordinary situation arising out of coronavirus, children, students and elderly citizens are advised not to take part in the event,” said an official release.

The Centre had earlier advised state governments to hold the Independence day celebrations on August 15 with sufficient COVID-19 precautions. Subsequently, it was advised that there shall be no participation of freedom fighters, since they are all senior citizens.

In Chennai, a ceremony will take place in the morning after 9 am.  It consists of unfurling of the National Flag by Chief Minister Edappadi K Palaniswami, playing of the National Anthem, presentation of Guard of Honour by the police including paramilitary forces, home guards, NCC, Scouts, etc, speech by the Chief Minister and singing of the National Anthem

While nearly one lakh police personnel will be deployed across the State for security, around 15,000 of them have been deployed in Chennai alone following an intel alert.

Five-tier security is given for the Secretariat where Chief Minister Edappadi Palaniswamy will be giving the speech and hoist the national flag on 15 August.