04th December 2015 20:08:32 Hours
Ending the five-day long goodwill visit and reassuring continued cooperation to the Sri Lankan armed forces, General Dalbir Singh, Chief of the Army Staff of the Indian Army who was here at the invitation of his Sri Lankan counterpart, left for India Friday morning (4).
The Indian delegation, comprised of Mrs Namitha Suhag, the spouse of General Dalbir Singh, Brigadier Gopal Gurang, Colonel Amitabh Jha, and Captain N.K Saraswat during their stay in Sri Lanka met the Prime Minister Hon Ranil Wickramasinghe, Field Marshal Sarath Fonseka, State Minister of Defence, Hon Ruwan Wijewardene, Secretary Defence, Eng Karunasena Hettiarachchi, Chief of Defence Staff, Navy and Air Force Commanders and visited Kandy, Trincomalee and Galle after military ceremonies at the Army Headquarters were over upon their arrival in Sri Lanka on Sunday (29).
The Indian Army Chief prior to the continuation of his itinerary, paid tribute to the memory of fallen IPKF Jawans at the IPKF memorial at Battaramulla in a solemn ceremony.
Major General Jagath Dias, Chief of Staff of the Army on behalf of the Commander of the Army greeted him Friday (4) morning at the Colombo Bandaranaike International Airport soon after he arrived at the departure terminal before the delegation was ushered to the VIP lounge. Prior to his departure, the Indian Army Chief warmly thanked the Sri Lanka Army for all the arrangements and spoke high of his experiences, gained through cordial meetings and talks during his stay.
Major General Jagath Dias at the same time gifted the Indian Army Chief who felt Sri Lanka was quite close to his heart due to his IPKF service commitments in late 1980s with a photo album that depicts memorable interactions he has had during the visit and other interactions of interest in Sri Lanka.
Major General Sudantha Ranasinghe, Senior Liaison Officer, Captain Prakash Gopalan, Defence Advisor at the High Commission of India, Brigadier Jayantha Gunarathne, Director Operations and a few senior officers were at the airport to bid him goodbye.
Mrs Sharanki Dias, Vice President, Army Seva Vanitha Unit was also at the airport to say goodbye to Mrs Namitha Suhag, the spouse of General Dalbir Singh. During his stay, the Sri Lanka Army’s Seva Vanitha Unit President, Mrs Nayana De Silva and the Executive Board held a separate reception to the visiting Mrs Namitha Suhag at Kingsbury Hotel.
Chief of the Army Staff of the Indian Army during his discussions with his Sri Lankan counterpart on Monday (30) shared views on current issues in the region and stressed the need to resolve them in an amicable manner with exchange of vital information, etc. General Dalbir Singh highlighted the importance of modernizing the Sri Lanka Army to suit international standards to meet with different types of emerging threats, including cyber attacks, etc.
During the cordial meeting Lieutenant General Crishanthe De Silva appreciated such assistance and requested the Indian Army to explore possibilities of new areas of training.