After successful completion of the ‘Basic Course - No 44’ of the Army’s elite Special Forces (SF), a total of 10 officers and 183 other rankers passed out Saturday (18) morning during a glittering ceremony at Maduru Oya SF Training School grounds.
The participation of the Commander of the Army Lieutenant General Jagath Jayasuriya as the Chief Guest, added further colour and dignity to the occasion, coloured by parachute jumps, sky diving, displays of unarmed combat, taekwondo, military operations in urban terrain (mouth), scintillating performances and band displays, comprised of soothing melodies, etc.
Three of the course graduates for their excellent achievements received special recognition with award of trophies and certificates from the Chief Guest. Best Student, Best Physical and Best Shot were those categories that received the special appreciation on the completion of the 9 month-long course.
Lieutenant General Jagath Jayasuriya on arrival at the venue was received by Colonel of the SF Regiment Major General Jagath Alwis. In accordance with military traditions, the visiting Army Chief was greeted with a Guard Turnout plus a Guard of Honour. The Chief Guest after taking the salute and inspecting the parade, was ushered to the main stage for distribution of prizes and merit awards to the graduates.
Lieutenant General Jayasuriya soon after the distribution of awards made a symbolic donation of books to the SF library at Maduru Oya and sat for a group photo with the graduates, giving them a symbol of eternal remembrance.
Adding another dimension to the day’s programme, the Commander took time off and freely spoke to a cross section of the parents of the graduates who were eagerly waiting to meet their beloved ones upon graduation. Lieutenant General Jayasuriya listened to them attentively and sought their views in relation to their well-being and family issues.
The Commander during his address to the occasion extended his greetings and best wishes on those who were passing out and expressed his satisfaction on the training modules of the SF which during the height of terrorism was able to render an invaluable contribution.
Senior SF officers, Army invitees, Lieutenant Colonel R.M.M Ranasinghe, Commandant, SF Training School, Maduru Oya and a gathering of visitors witnessed the day’s event.