SRI LANKA NAVY TAKES PART IN THE 66TH INDEPENDENCE DAY CELEBRATIONS
Sri Lanka Navy took part in the 66th Independence Day celebrations held in the historic city of Kegalle on 04th February 2014. President of the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka, His Excellency Mahinda Rajapaksa was the Chief Guest. Religious dignitaries, Ministers, Members of Parliament, Members of the Diplomatic Corps, Chief of Defence Staff, Commanders of the Armed Forces, Inspector General of Police and Government officials also graced the occasion. A large number of people had thronged to the venue to witness the 66th Independence Day celebrated for the first time in the Sabaragamuwa Province. Among the distinguished invitees participating in the Independence Day celebrations was Vice Admiral Jayanath Colombage, Commander of the Sri Lanka Navy.
The Independence Day celebrations commenced with the hoisting of the National Flag by His Excellency the President amidst the beating of “magul bera” and blowing of the conch shells. The National Flag for the occasion was customarily made ready by the naval personnel of the communication branch of the Navy in keeping with the customs and traditions involved in its hoisting. The National Anthem was sung by 110 students from the schools in the Kegalle District to the music provided by the Sri Lanka Navy’s oriental music band.
A Guard of Honour followed by a 21-gun salute was awarded to the President of the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka by the Armed Forces. Thereafter, His Excellency the President delivered the address to the nation.
At the Independence Day parade which followed, Commodore WASS Perera rode in the pilot vehicle representing the Sri Lanka Navy. The naval contingent, which marched in the parade was led by Commander (C) Janaka Samaranayake. It consisted of five divisions comprising naval personnel clad in blue and white uniforms and camouflage, representing Naval Headquarters, Afloat Command, Special Boat Squadron (SBS), Rapid Action Boat Squadron (RABS) and women sailors.