16th May 2019 21:18:55 Hours
All is set to pay the Nation’s tribute to the memory of patriotic fallen War Heroes in the series of ‘Dasawarshabhishekaya’ (Decade of Peace) ceremonies, scheduled to commence on 19th May and ends on 22nd May 2019, in which National War Heroes’ Day (19 May) commemoration at Battaramulla National War Heroes’ Monument, Lighting of oil lamps, Issue of a new coin, first day cover plus a commemorative stamp, Recognition of ‘Parama Weera Vibushanaya’ (PWV) recipient War Heroes as National Heroes, Launch of ‘Uththamachara’ book containing PWV recipients’ victorious warfare achievements, Award of ‘Vishishta Seva Vibushanaya’ (VSV) medal to 65 senior tri-service Officers and island-wide ‘Peace Walks’ in all major cities have been planned with the participation of HE the President Maithripala Sirisena and relatives of fallen War Heroes, so said Lieutenant General Mahesh Senanayaka addressing a Media Conference on Thursday (16) at the Colombo Sri Lanka Electrical Mechanical and Engineering (SLEME) Regimental Headquarters.
The forthcoming 18th May 2019 reaches a milestone of a decade upon eradication of the brutal terrorism that plagued Sri Lanka for about 30 years through the Humanitarian Operations. During this decade, Sri Lanka Army contributing to the state machinery for promotion of national reconciliation and unity in the country has contributed in a unique manner. Against this background, all of us as members of a victorious and dignified Army who had strode across the road of peace have a sacred responsibility for continuation of the same while marking the ‘Decade of Peace’ (Dasawarshabhishekaya) in a meaningful and timely commemoration, the Commander added.
He said that the National War Heroes’ Day (May 19) commemoration ceremony, organized by the Rana Viru Seva Authority (RVSA) would take place at Battaramulla War Hero Monument on Sunday (19) at 3.30 p.m, headed by HE the President Maithripala Sirisena and attended by relatives of fallen and missing tri-service and Police War Heroes.
On the same day (19), all island-wide religious places, state and private agencies, houses, tri-service camps and Police stations by simultaneously lighting a ‘Lamp of Peace’ sharp at 7.00 p.m. at all respective places in memory of brave fallen Tri-service, Police and Civil Security Department War Heroes, he pointed out.
Arrangements have also been made to issue a new coin that portrays the Vellamullivaikkal War Heroes’ monument where the war for peace was brought to conclusion as one more feature of the commemorative programmes of the ‘Dasawarshabhishekaya’ (Decade of Peace). A first day cover plus a commemorative stamp that displays the same Vellamullivaikkal War Hero monument is also to be issued on 22 May 2019 at the BMICH to coincide with the milestone ‘Dasawarshabhishekaya’.
Recognition of the Army’s Parama Weera Vibushanaya (PWV) laureates as National War Heroes by publishing their victorious warfare achievements and biographies in the book ‘Uththamachara’ is scheduled to take place at the BMICH on 22 May 2019 at 3.30 pm, headed by HE the President and a galaxy of distinguished invitees. During this book launch ceremony, 29 PWV laureates, posthumously recognized as National Heroes in contemporary times are honoured presenting first copies of the ‘Uththamachara’ book to next of kin of those fallen PWV War Heroes by HE the President, the Commander of the Army explained.
Those National War Heroes, irrespective of the enemy’s threat and risks against their own lives fought for defence of their comrades and the objective of their mission and individually laid their precious lives voluntarily, displaying unparalleled spirits of gallantry and bravery in them.
Similarly, 65 senior Tri-service officers are to be lauded awarding Vishista Seva Vibushanaya (VSV) medal on 22 May 2019 at 8.30 am at the Presidential Secretariat in a ceremony, headed by HE the President. Award of the VSV medal for Regular officers in the tri-services is made in accordance with the provisions in the Extraordinary Gazette No 156/5, issued on 1 September 1981. Those officers who have served not less than 25 years with an unblemished, disciplined, noble, obedient and exceptional record of service in the regular force are eligible for receipt of this prestigious medal, Lieutenant General Senanayake pointed out.
Similarly, island-wide Security Force Headquarters on 22 May 2019 at 8.00 am as one more major commemorative segment launches ‘Dasawarshabhisheka’ ‘Walk for Peace’ with hundreds of their troops covering main cities, like Colombo, Kandy, Jaffna, Vavuniya, Mullaittivu, Polonnaruwa and Kilinochchi, together with Divisions, Brigades and all formations under the close supervision of respective Security Force Commanders, the Commander of the Army said.
Major General Sathyapriya Liyanage, Commandant, Sri Lanka Army Volunteer Force (SLAVF), Commander, Security Forces - West (SF-West) and Commander, Overall Operational Command (OOC), Major General Shavendra Silva, Chief of Staff, Major General Wajira Palihakkara, Officiating Deputy Chief of Staff and Director General Financial Management, Major General Jayantha Seneviratne, Adjutant General, Brigadier Jayanath Jayaweera, Director Personnel Administration and the Regimental Sergeant Major (RSM) of the Army Headquarters were at the head table during the Media Conference.
Lieutenant General Senanayake before he left the SLEME auditorium responded to a number of Media queries, presented to him by those members of the Media.