Beating the retreat ceremony cancelled at Atarri ahead of Abhinandan’s arrival

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NEW DELHI: The Beating the Retreat ceremony that is held daily at the at Attari-Wagah Border will not be held on Friday as Wing Commander Abhinandan Varthaman is expected to be back around 4-5 pm.

“The Beating the Retreat ceremony (at Attari-Wagah Border) will not be held today. Senior team of the Indian Air Force will receive Wing Commander Abhinandan Varthaman,” Deputy Commissioner Shiv Dular Singh Dhillon said in Amritsar.

The martial ceremony has been called off due to administrative requirements in the wake of the IAF Wing Commander’s release at the frontier. The public will not be allowed in the ceremony area that is located in the Attari of Punjab along the Indo-Pak border.

Officials said the decision has been taken in view of “military requirements” where Wing Commander Varthaman will be handed over to senior Indian Air Force officials.

Wing Commander Varthaman will be received by a delegation of the Indian Air Force at the Wagah border. The 35-year-old Wing Commander has been in Pakistan’s captivity since Wednesday after his MiG 21 was shot and he bailed out during a dogfight to repel an attack by the neighbouring country. He is likely to be brought from Rawalpindi to Lahore and will then be handed over first to the International Committee of Red Cross (ICRC) under rules of the Geneva Convention before taking him to the JCP between 12 noon and 2 pm to return home.


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