11th November 2017 23:20:06 Hours
Lieutenant General Mahesh Senanayake, Commander of the Army, himself from the same Regiment as the Chief Guest at the invitation of the SLE Colonel Commandant, Major General Sudantha Ranasinghe joined the final segment of the anniversary events, in which the pride of place, went to commemoration of all fallen SLE War Heroes and opening of a new Convention Centre at the SLE Regimental headquarters this evening (11).
Sri Lanka Engineers (SLE), one of the most prestigious regiments in the Army commenced a series of commemorative events on Thursday (9) to mark its 66th anniversary at its Panagoda Regimental Headquarters.
The day’s ceremony of the ‘Sappers’ included the ignition of the eternal lamp in memory of fallen War Heroes, floral-wreath laying and a two-minute silence at the SLE monument premises by both the Chief Guest and relatives of all fallen SLE War Heroes and recall of the memories of fallen War Heroes.
Religious observances of Buddhist, Hindu, Christian and Islamic denominations set in afterwards as everybody joined standing in silence.
The SLE monument was afterwards revered by SLE Colonel Commandant, SLE Brigade Commander, SLE Centre Commandant, and representatives of retired SLE veterans, SLE Unit Commanders, Commandant, SLE Training School and Regimental Warrant Officers in succession and next of kin of fallen War Heroes soon after the first floral wreath was laid by the day’s Chief Guest, Lieutenant General Mahesh Senanayake, Commander of the Army.
Many retired SLE Officers, serving Officers, relatives of fallen SLE War Heroes and a large gathering attended the 66th commemorative ceremonies.
Before commemoration of all fallen SLE War Heroes, the Commander of the Army on Saturday (11) unveiled a plaque and inaugurated a multipurpose Convention Centre for All Ranks inside the Regimental Headquarters premises.
A drive-past Guard Turnout at the entrance to the SLE premises greeted the Chief Guest in accordance with military formalities after Major General Sudantha Ranasinghe, Colonel Commandant, SLE welcomed the day's protagonist as melodies of patriotic songs began reverberating. A group of 'Kandyan Ves' dancers conducted the Chief Guest to the location in a ceremonial manner and invited him to open the new Convention Centre.
Amidst religious blessings, the Commander of the Army, together with Major General Sudantha Ranasinghe cut the ribbon and unveiled a common plaque at the Regimental Headquarters premises and marked the ceremonial inauguration of the new Convention Centre afterwards.
The Commander of the Army after meeting officers of SLE regiment shared a couple of views with and inquired into their well-being and service commitments.
As the first leg of the anniversary ceremonies, a ceremonial parade to the SLE Colonel Commandant plus an all rank lunch on Thursday (9) formally brought the anniversary arrangements to an inauguration.
An all-night Pirith chanting ceremony Saturday (11) evening at the same premises, followed by ‘Heel Daana’ the following day (12) morning, is to bring the 66th anniversary programme to an end.