‘Uttama Pooja tribute’ medals for Rana Viru families
Defence and Urban Development Ministry Secretary Gotabhaya Rajapaksa
was the chief guest at the ‘Uttama Pooja’ felicitation ceremony at the
Sri Lanka Air Force base in Diyatalawa on June 25.
P. Amarawathi, mother of Sri Lanka
Army sergeant T. Balakumar who was killed in the attack on
the Mullativu Army base by LTTE terrorists on July 17, 1996
receives the medal from Defence and Urban Development
Ministry Secretary Gotabhaya Rajapaksa. Courtesy
The ‘Uttama Pooja’ is the brainchild of the Defence Secretary and has
been initiated to pay tribute to the families of the brave men and women
of the Armed Forces who made the ultimate sacrifice in safe guarding of
This year’s ceremony felicitated the parents, wives, children or next
of kin of the 1,505 war heroes from the Badulla district in the Uva
Province. Accordingly, ‘Ranaviru’ families of 1,368 Army, 48 Navy, 11
Air Force and 78 Police personnel received the ‘Uttama Pooja’ medals.
Defence Secretary Gotabhaya Rajapaksa said the sacrifices made by the
valiant soldiers in the three decade long war against terrorism were
boundless and the commitment and support of their parents, wives,
children and the next of kin were tremendous.
He further added the government is giving due consideration to the
issues of education and welfare of the children and families of the
fallen heroes and the Seva Vanitha Units of the Tri Forces are very much
involved in these projects. Especially through the ‘Ranaviru’ housing
project, hundreds of houses have already been distributed among the
“Wear this medal which is a symbol of gratitude and recognition with
pride and honour for the great sacrifice made in the name of
safeguarding the countries territorial integrity and sovereignty,” the
Defence Secretary said.
A large number of guests including the President of the Ranaviru Seva
Authority Padma Wettewa, Defence Ministry Additional Secretary S.
Hettiarachchi, Defence Ministry Military Liaison Officer Maj. Gen.
(Retd) Palitha Fernando, Air Force Commander Air Marshal Harsha
Abewickrama and senior military officials were present at the occasion.
The Defence Ministry and the Ranaviru Seva Authority organized the
felicitation ceremony. Courtesy www.defence.lk