The newly-appointed 23rd Commander of the Army Lieutenant General Shavendra Silva was welcomed by the Sri Lanka Army Headquarters today (21 August) when he arrived at the Army Headquarters to take office amid military honours, ceremonials and greetings.
Upon arrival at the Army Headquarters premises, Silva was greeted by a Guard Turnout, presented by the Gajaba Regiment (GR) troops and was received by the Commanding Officer of the Headquarters Battalion, together with the GR Centre Commandant.
Adjutant General, Major General Jayantha Seneviratne afterwards warmly greeted the new Commander as he arrived at the parade ground and requested him to take the salute of the Guard of Honour of GR troops from the special dais, together with the Parade Commander.
Parade Commander, Captain T.D.M Thissage of the Gajaba Regiment, holding the symbolic sword, reported the parade, comprised of 2 Officers and 49 Other Ranks to the day’s Chief Guest and invited him to review the Guard of Honour in accordance with age-old military traditions.
Afterwards, the new Commander of the Army arrived at his office and lit the traditional oil lamp to inaugurate his office.
Offering of the traditional ‘Deheth Wattiya’ (tray of betel) to the members of the Maha Sangha led by Eethala Wetunuwewe Gnanatilleke Thero, invoked blessings on the new Commander of the Army and delivered a brief oration highlighting the significance of the office of the Commander and the occasion.
Lieutenant General Silva afterwards received blessings from clergy members of all denominations on the occasion and culminated the brief ceremony with the offer of ‘Pirikara’ and gifts to the members of the Maha Sangha and other clergy members of Catholic, Hindu and Islamic faiths.