'Vishista Seva Vibhushanaya Awards' conferred on gallant Officers
COLOMBO: The prestigious and colourful investiture ceremony for the
conferment of the Vishista Seva Vibhushanaya Awards was held yesterday
at the Presidential Secretariat, with Commander-in-Chief of the Armed
Forces, President Mahinda Rajapaksa presiding. The arrival of President
Rajapaksa and his entourage in procession was heralded with the blowing
Two minutes silence was observed in honour and in gratitude to the
service rendered by the Service Personnel, who have sacrificed their
lives for their Motherland followed by reading of the Proclamation. The
decoration was conferred by President Rajapaksa to the gallant senior
officers of the Regular Forces of the Army, Navy and Air Force, for
their exceptional, distinguished and loyal service to the Motherland.
These officers have served the Armed Forces for over 25 years on
continuous, uninterrupted service and has had an unblemished record in
their moral and military conduct.
Army Commander Lt. General G.S.C. Fonseka, the Navy Commander Vice
Admiral W.K.J. Karannagoda and Air Force Commander Air Marshall
W.D.R.M.J. Goonetilleke also received these prestigious awards.
The Service Commanders who have been the sole Arbitrators in
prescribing the required standards and benchmarks of conduct have been
responsible for their recommendations, on those officers who have been
worthy of distinction in every way and has had an irreproachable conduct
within their entire tenure of service.
A personal record, clear of entries during the whole of the
qualifying period, has been the criteria stipulated for a grading of
'Irreproachable Conduct'. Each and every recommendation had to be
inclusive of a detailed description of the Award recipient's
Exceptional, Distinguished and Loyal Service.
The number of awards to be awarded each year, was decided at the
discretion of the Defence Secretary. These exclusive awards were
normally awarded only to officers of the rank of Lieutenant Colonels and
above, in the Army, and the equivalent in the Navy and Air Force.
The decoration was of Bronze metal and shaped in a four petal form,
bearing in relief, on the reverse and in the centre, an ancient warrior
mounted on horseback, surrounded by a motif of circles (Arimbu) and
lotus petals (Palapethi), with the suspension bearing the facial design
of a mythical warrior (Kibihimuna) and in relief on the reverse , the
Armorial Ensign of the Democratic Socialistic Republic of Sri Lanka in
the centre, comprising the Heraldic Lion of Sri Lanka, surrounded by the
lotus petal border within a sheaf of paddy, surmounted by the Wheel of
Doctrine, with the filled vessel at the base, with a depiction of the
Sun in splendour and the Moon on the right and left respectively,
surrounded by the legend, "For Exceptional Distinction And Loyal
Service", inscribed in Sinhala and Tamil, and the year of institution
1981, inscribed below, and the whole surrounded by the design as
depicted on the reverse.
President's Secretary Lalith Weeratunga, Senior Ministers,
Parliamentarians, Members of the Armed Services and other distinguished
guests attended the ceremony.
The decoration is to be worn on the left breast suspended from a
ribbon, one inch and a quarter in width and two inches in length which
shall be Primrose in colour, with two bright green stripes one quarter
of an inch in width placed at the edges.