10th October 2022 16:46:01 Hours
The Sri Lanka Army; the proud “Protector of the State” which led a sustained crusade against ruthless terrorism and brought durable peace to the Nation after more than three decades of human suffering celebrated its 73rd anniversary aka the Army Day on Monday (10 October) with grandeur at Panagoda, assuring that it would continue to be the leading gurantor of national security.
Fluttering Army Flag and multi-coloured flags of all Regiments and formations which provided a dramatic backdrop for the day's formal spectacle in the premises where Lieutenant General Vikum Liyanage, Commander of the Army added dignity and prominence to the commemoration as the Chief Guest, set the stage aptly ready for the day's proceedings in the glittering ceremony soon after the Army Chief's arrival was heralded.
Typical of military formalities, a smartly-attired Guard Turnout salute greeted the day's Chief Guest as he entered the premises after the Centre Commandant, Sri Lanka Light Infantry (SLLI) Regimental Centre welcomed Lieutenant General Vikum Liyanage to the location. Minutes after the honours, he arrived at the entrance to the SLLI parade ground with Mrs Janaki Liyanage, President, Army Seva Vanitha Unit where Major General TJ Kodithuwakku RWP RSP ndu, Chief of Staff, together with the Adjutant General, Major General MGWWWMCB Wickramasinghe RWP RSP ndu psc extended a warm welcome and ushered him to commence the day's proceedings by hoisting the Army Flag at first.
Soon after the Army Song that sums up the hallowed duties and selfless commitments of All Ranks reverberated, all invitees rose to their feet and solemnly observed one-minute silence in memory of all fallen War Heroes whose legacy of heroism has gone into the annals of the Army and Sri Lanka's history.
This year’s Army Day parade commanded by Major General SUMN Manage WWV RWP RSP psc, Director General General Staff, together with Brigadier GWA Senevirathna USP psc, Director Research Concept and Doctrine, 2nd in Command consisted of 77 Officers and 652 Other Ranks of all 25 Regiments with Colours squads. After the Chief Guest reviewed the parade, elegantly-dressed troops saluted the Army Commander in conformity with military traditions.
In another gesture of remembrance, the day's Chief Guest, Lieutenant General Vikum Liyanage afterwards pinned newly introduced Army Commander’s Commendation Badge on 19 selected Army personnel who have made the organization proud and contributed to make the organization better. The laureates were distinct achievers in bravery, honesty, commitment towards the national emergencies and duty without considering life treats etc.
The Commander in his brief address to the occasion paid tribute to all past Commanders, fallen and injured War Heroes, serving Officers, Other Ranks, civil servants and their families and urged All Ranks to continue their good work and commitment in future too for the best interests of the country. He stressed that the Army will always be committed towards preserving the constitution and the democratic process while ensuring the wellbeing of the citizenry. The Army chief also stated that Sri Lanka Army endeavors to be a role model in judicious resource management and will render its fullest support towards national efforts for economical revival.
The day's glittering event was attended by spouses of several Senior Officers, Chief of Staff, Commandant, Sri Lanka Army Volunteer Force, Principal Staff Officers, Security Force Commanders, Officers and Other Ranks.