The upcoming Republic Day or R-Day celebrations in the city is likely to be a different affair this time as corporate giants from the city would be adding colour to rekindle the national spirit and sense of belonging among Mumbaikars.
As a part of the joint initiative between the state and Bombay First, an NGO, the R-Day celebrations will have numerous events to attract maximum participation from the citizens.
Top corporate honchos such as Anand Mahindra, Deepak Parekh, Noel Tata, Jamshyd Godrej, Vithal Palekar, Ranjit Pandit, Russel Parera and Ashok Advani backed the initiative.
A meeting would be held in a day or two, to finalise the participation of corporate houses, in the presence of Chief Secretary J K Banthia.
An appeal forwarded to the who’s who from the city’s corporate world states the Republic Day celebration was planned to engage Mumbaikars to reignite the spirit and significance of the day with initiatives by the government, the BMC, the police, the army, the navy, corporate sectors, PSUs and citizens.
Important buildings will be illuminated on January 25 and January 26, and the Cricket Club of India (CCI) would be organising a day out for physically challenged children with the help of Bombay First. The plan is to take these children for films at theatres across the city.
Illumination of special landmarks in the city such as the sea link, Gateway of India, and headquarters of the BMC, MMRDA, Western and Central Railway, the police and head offices of corporate giants located in the city would be a part of R-Day celebrations. Other landmarks such as Rajabai Tower, Mumbai University, Bombay High Court and gymkhanas in Marine Drive would also be illumined and their respective managements have been asked to do the needful.
Big corporate houses will be asked to illuminate and decorate neighbourhood compounds walls and footpaths with the tricolour. And efforts are being made to organise a special fireworks and laser show at Marine Drive, Worli, Dadar, Carter Road, Juhu and Versova, sponsored by various corporate houses, said a senior government official.
The navy was also requested to illuminate its ships docked at the bay opposite Gateway of India with lighting work resembling the tricolour. Similarly, the Yacht Club was asked to light up yachts docked in the bay on the nights of January 25 and January 26, the official added.
In addition, the Western India Automobiles Association (WIAA) was asked to organise a Victor Vintage Car Rally on R-Day. The local clubs would be asked to organise friendly community tournaments of basketball, football and hockey.
The state also requested the armed forces, the BMC and the police department to arrange their bands at different stands in the city, said the officer.