Vijayawada, Aug 15 (IANS) Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister Y. S. Jagan Mohan Reddy hoisted the national flag here to lead the state in celebrating Independence Day on Monday.
After unfurling the national flag at Indira Gandhi Municipal Stadium, the Chief Minister reviewed the colourful parade by contingents of state police, National Cadet Corps (NCC) and social welfare residential educational institutions.
The Chief Minister, in his speech, described the national flag as a symbol of freedom, world’s largest democracy, sovereignty and self-respect of all Indians.
Jagan Mohan Reddy said that the tricolour also symbolises sacrifices of great freedom fighters, reflects the confluence of Hinduism, Islam and Christianity and the unity in diversity.
The Chief Minister recalled that it was a Telugu, Pingali Venkaiah, who designed the national flag and which has a special place in the heart of 141 crore Indians.
He paid rich tributes to freedom fighters who laid down their lives to free the country from foreign rule.
The stadium was specially decked up with the national flags. A colourful march past by various contingents and tableaux highlighting the various welfare and development schemes of the state government marked the occasion.
Standing in an open-top vehicle, the Chief Minister greeted people with folded hands as he reviewed the parade by contingents of Andhra Pradesh Special Police (APSP), NCC girls, residential educational institutions and Sainik Welfare.
Holding national flags in their hands, the audience cheered the contingents as they marched on the ground.
Assembly Speaker Tammineni Seetharam, Chief Secretary Sameer Sharma, Director General of Police K. V. Rajendranath Reddy and other top officials attended the ceremony.
Ministers and senior officials unfurled the national flag at celebrations held in all the districts.