18,000 ft. Minus 30 degrees. ITBP keeps the tricolour flying high on Republic Day in Ladakh

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The white band of India’s tricolour seemed to blend into the clear sky as the Indo-Tibetan Border Police (ITBP) jawan held it aloft on Republic Day.

Thirteen others stood in a perfect line behind him, their arms by their sides, on the bare, snowy slope.

They were at a height of 18,000 feet — even Everest is just around 3 km taller — and temperature was well below zero degrees Celsius.

This magnificent tableau of grit and patriotism was photographed in Ladakh as India celebrated the day on which its supreme law — the Constitution — came into effect on January 26, 1950.

Now watch this video of ITBP personnel carrying the tricolour as they walk through knee-deep snow at the India-China border in Uttarakhand.

“This enlightened and far-reaching document laid the foundations of our Republic,” President Ram Nath Kovind said of the Constitution. “It was the work of men and women of principle and patriotism — the members of the Constituent Assembly. In particular, we recall the role of Babasaheb Dr Bhimrao Ambedkar, who chaired the Drafting Committee.”

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