High Commission of Sri Lanka in India

66th Independence and National Day of Sri Lanka: Celebrations in New Delhi PDF Print option in slimbox / lytebox? (info) E-mail
Wednesday, 12 February 2014 00:19


High Commissioner Prasad Kariyawasam, joined by the staff of the Sri Lanka High Commission in India, offered alms to Buddhist priests representing the Sri Lankan Buddhist temples located in India on the morning of 4 February, commencing day-long celebrations of the 66th Independence and National Day of Sri Lanka in New Delhi. The alms-giving held at the High Commissioner’s Residence was followed by a Ceremony involving Sri Lankan expatriates in New Delhi at which High Commissioner Kariyawasam hoisted the National Flag to the accompaniment of ceremonial drums (magul bera) played by traditionally attired drummers of the Sri Lanka Navy Cultural Troupe. The solemn early morning ceremony included the reading of the 66th Independence Day Message of President Mahinda Rajapaksa. Addressing the Sri Lankan community in New Delhi, High Commissioner Kariyawasam stressed the important role that each of them plays in strengthening relations at the people-to-people level which is an important component of the India-Sri Lanka relationship.  


A Ceremony with the participation of Senior Minister of Urban Affairs of Sri Lanka, A.H.M. Fowzie, Member of Parliament Malini Fonseka, High Commissioner Kariyawasam and High Commission officials was held at the Surajkund Mela (Fair) as well on 4 February to celebrate Sri Lanka’s Independence Day. The Mela which showcases the finest handlooms and handicrafts of India includes participation of several foreign countries from across the world and draws over 100,000 visitors on a daily basis.  


Dr Pallam Raju, Minister of Human Resource Development of India, represented the Government of India at the Reception hosted by the High Commissioner at his Residence in the evening of 4 February. The Reception was attended by over 700 guests including Members of the Indian Parliament, Heads of Mission and diplomats of over 150 countries, Indian government officials, business persons and media personnel. Guests were entertained by traditional Sri Lankan dancers of the Sri Lanka Navy dance troupe throughout the evening and served Sri Lankan cuisine.   


The event included the celebration of the signing of the 60th Anniversary year of Sri Lanka’s Perpetual Lease on its 3.917 acre site in Chanakyapuri where the Sri Lanka High Commission and residences of staff are situated in New Delhi’s diplomatic enclave. One of the earliest signatories to a lease in perpetuity, the High Commission of Sri Lanka acquired its site from the Government of India on 17 November 1953. The High Commission buildings incorporate several historical ornamental elements from the heritage sites in Anuradhapura, Polonnaruwa, Sigiriya and Kandy and extol the country’s unique national identity while highlighting its shared cultural heritage with India. The Chancery and Residence were recently featured in a book titled ‘Delhi’s Diplomatic Domains’.  

Sri Lanka High CommissionNew Delhi

11 February 2014