ECONOMYNEXT – In a historic first for Sri Lanka, three female Senior Superintendents of Police (SSP) were promoted to the rank of Deputy Inspector General (DIG) on Thursday (07).
Police spokesman SSP Nihal Thalduwa told EconomyNext that the promotions are part of a series of reforms that will make it possible for a female police officer to rise to the rank of Inspector General of Police (IGP) if she is qualified for the job.
The police media division said SSPs Renuka Jayasundara, Nishanthi Senevirathna, and Padmini Weerasuriya now serve as DIGs.
Jayasundara, who is attached to the Research and Development division of police, will now head the Police Women & Children Bureau, police media said.
Seneviratne, who is attached to the State Intelligence Service (SIS), will now oversee the Research and Information Technology division of the police.
Padmini, meanwhile, will oversee Police Welfare, to which is already attached, according to the police media statement.
SSP Thalduwa said this is the first time in the country’s history that three female SSPs were promoted to the rank of DIG at once.
Sri Lanka Police now has three female DIGs to its name, including DIG Bimsani Jasinghaarachchi, the first woman to hold this rank in the history of the force. Jasinghaarachchi was also the subject of controversial fundamental rights petition filed by 33 male SSPs last year challenging her promotion to DIG.
Promotions for women cadre in the police force have long been fraught with a number of issues, with many an obstacle standing in their way.
Analysts say Thursday’s appointments are the results of a longstanding struggle for equality and recognition that goes back years. (Colombo/Oct07/2021)