New Delhi: For the first time in history of Republic Day celebrations, French Army contingent will be participating in the parade along with the Indian Armed forces, said sources with Ministry of Defence.

It is for the first time that any foreign army contingent will be taking part in prestigious Republic Day Parade.

French President Francois Hollande will be the chief guest at the Republic Day celebrations this year.

This will be the fifth time that a French leader will be a Chief Guest at India’s Republic Day celebrations — the maximum number from any country so far. Earlier leaders from that country had presided in 1976, 1980, 1998 and 2008.

Meanwhile, a French Army contingent comprising 56 personnel of 35th Infantry Regiment of 7th Armoured Brigade, is already in India for 'Shakti-2016' -- eight-day counter-terrorism and counter-insurgency joint exercise in Rajasthan.