New Delhi | Jagran News Desk: "Abide With Me" - one of favourite hymns of Mahatma Gandhi - has been dropped for this year's Beating the Retreat ceremony that will be held on January 29. The hymn, according to a brochure released by the Indian Army on Saturday, has been replaced by "Ae Mere Watan Ke Logon".

'Ae Mere Watan Ke Logon', sung by Lata Mangeshkar and written by Kavi Pradeep, is a patriotic song that commemorates the supreme sacrifice made by the Indian soldiers during the 1962 Indo-China war.

'Abide With Me', written by Scottish Anglican poet and hymnologist Henry Francis Lyte in 1847, has been part of the Beating the Retreat ceremony since 1950. In 2020 also, the Centre had also planned to drop the hymn but the idea was later dropped following an uproar by a section of people.

The Congress has attacked the Centre for dropping 'Abide With Me' hymn and alleged that it is an another attempt to erase Mahatma Gandhi's legacy.

"Mahatma Gandhi's favourite Hymn is dropped from the Republic Day Beating Retreat Ceremony. This is yet another attempt by this petty BJp govt to erase Bapu's legacy," tweeted Congress Spokesperson Shama Mohamed.

"No action was taken against @SadhviPragya_MP for her comments against Gandhiji. This is BJP's love for Godse!" she said in another tweet.

Another Congress spokesperson Gourav Vallabh said there was an "ideological war" going on between thoughts of Gandhi and the thoughts of his assassin Nathuram Godse.

"Currently, the government that is governing is a strong believer in the thoughts of Godse. They don't take any action on people who say bad words for Gandhi ji. Government has time and again showed that it is against Gandhi ji's ideas," he alleged.

Indian Army announces 26 tunes for this year's ceremony

Meanwhile, the Indian Army has announced the 26 tunes for this year's Beating the Retreat ceremony. As per the Army brochure, the tunes that will be played are 'Hey Kanchha', 'Channa Bilauri', 'Jai Janam Bhumi', 'Nritya Sarita', 'Vijay Josh', 'Kesaria Banna', 'Veer Siachen', 'Hathroi', 'Vijay Ghosh', 'Ladaakoo', 'Swadeshi', 'Amar Chattan', 'Golden Arrows' and 'Swarn Jayanti'.

'Veer Sainik', 'Fanfare by Buglers, 'INS India', 'Yashasvee', 'Jai Bharati', 'Kerala', 'Siki A Mole', 'Hind Ki Sena', 'Kadam Kadam Badhaye Ja', 'Drummers Call' besides 'Ae Mere Watan Ke Logon' are also part of the tunes that will be played on the evening of January 29, the brochure noted.

The ceremony, on the other hand, this year will conclude with 'Sare Jahan Se Acha', the brochure stated. It will see the participation of 44 buglers, 16 trumpeters and 75 drummers.

Beating Retreat is a centuries-old military tradition dating from the days when troops disengaged from the battle at sunset, it mentioned. As soon as the buglers sounded the retreat, the troops ceased fighting, sheathed their arms and withdrew from the battlefield, it added.

Beating Retreat marks the end of nearly week-long festivities of Republic Day, which used to begin on January 24. But this year, the celebrations will begin on January 23, the birth anniversary of Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose.

Posted By: Aalok Sensharma