The High Commission of Sri Lanka in Islamabad commemorated the 76th anniversary of the independence of the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka with a splendid ceremony held at a local hotel in Islamabad. Dignitaries, Sri Lankan High Commission staff, representatives, and friends of Sri Lanka, including the Honorary Consul of Sri Lanka in Lahore, Yasin Joya, and the Honorary Consul in Karachi, graced the occasion with their presence.
The celebration commenced with the stirring national anthems of both Sri Lanka and Pakistan, performed by a distinguished military band. This moment of unity was followed by the ceremonial lighting of the traditional lamp by the esteemed High Commissioner of Sri Lanka, along with the Chief Guest and other eminent dignitaries, symbolizing enlightenment and solidarity.
In his address, High Commissioner of Sri Lanka Admiral Wijegunaratne (retd) delivered an inspiring speech, shedding light on recent developments and remarkable achievements in Sri Lanka, particularly in the fight against terrorism. He extended gratitude to the Pakistani government and military for their steadfast support across various domains and underscored the need for further fortifying the enduring friendship and robust defence ties between the two nations.
The ceremonial cutting of the Sri Lankan Independence Day cake was a moment of camaraderie, led by High Commissioner Admiral Ravindra Vijaygunaratne, along with Chief Guest Federal Health Minister Nadeem Jan, the High Commissioner of Mauritius, Defense Attaché of South Africa, and other esteemed dignitaries.
Chief Guest Dr. Nadeem Jan extended warm congratulations to the High Commissioner of Sri Lanka for orchestrating a successful event and conveyed felicitations from the Government and people of Pakistan to the Government and people of Sri Lanka on their Independence Day. He highlighted the decades-long diplomatic, trade, and defence relations between the two countries, acknowledging the shared challenges and mutual cooperation.
The event also featured an engaging three-minute video showcasing Sri Lanka’s development strides and achievements, underscoring the nation’s commitment to international collaboration. Notably, the video spotlighted Sri Lanka’s significant humanitarian gesture of donating over 30,000 eye corneas to Pakistan, exemplifying the deep-rooted humanitarian bonds between the two nations.
Earlier on February 4, the official ceremony commenced at the Sri Lanka High Commission building with the unfurling of the national flag by Admiral Ravindra C Wijegunaratne (retd). The solemn occasion continued with the rendition of the national anthem in Sinhala and a two-minute silence paying homage to those who made great sacrifices for the nation.
The celebration of Sri Lanka’s 76th Independence Day in Islamabad serves as a testament to the enduring friendship, solidarity, and mutual respect shared between Sri Lanka and Pakistan, fostering a stronger bond for the prosperity and well-being of both nations.