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Asian Tribune is published by World Institute For Asian Studies|Powered by WIAS Vol. 12 No. 2306

70th Independence Day of Sri Lanka celebrated by Deputy High Commission in Chennai

From Gopal Ethiraj from Chennai
Chennai, 10 February, (Asiantribune.com):

The 70th Independence Day of Sri Lanka was celebrated in ceremonial way at the Deputy High Commission for Sri Lanka in Chennai on February 4 with the tri-lingual National Day Message of His Excellency the President of Sri Lanka read by the officers of the Mission, and with the blessings of the multi-faith religious leaders here.

The Deputy High Commissioner of Sri Lanka for Southern India, Mr. Vadivel Krishnamoorthy, ceremonially hoisted the National Flag amidst the beating of traditional drums of Magul Bera, followed by singing of National Anthem of Sri Lanka in Sinhala. The traditional oil lamp, kuthuvilakku, was lit by the Deputy High Commissioner and other dignitaries.

Multi-faith religious observances commenced with imparting of blessings by Venerable Kalawane Mahanama Thero, Monk-In-Charge, Maha Bodhi Society followed by Dr. T.S. Shanmugam Sivachariar Swami, Chief Priest & Administrator of Sri Kaligambal Kamateswarar Devasthanam, Rev. Fr. Xavier, Parish Priest, Fathima Church, and Imam Dr. Salahuddin Mohammed Ayub, Chief Quazi, Royapettah Mosque.

Addressing the gathering the Deputy High Commissioner underscored the importance of introducing reconciliation and coexistence policy and the prospects on economic development to transform Sri Lanka into a hub of the Indian Ocean based on the Vision 2025 document launched in September 2017. Mr. Krishnamoorthy also highlighted the Mission’s Special Consular Programme targeting to reach zero level unregistered birth registration for Sri Lankan refugees living in South India. Further, he expressed his gratitude to the Sri Lankan establishments and expatriate community in Southern India for their exemplary services that has continued to contribute towards the economic and social development of the country strengthening the bilateral relations between the two countries.

This year students of Anjana Rajapaksha Dance Academy’s performance added colour and glamour to the event and the participants were able to witness the essence of true Sri Lankan culture.

The official flag hoisting ceremony was attended by a large gathering of Sri Lankans and Indian well-wishers amounting to more than 200 persons. Two minutes’ silence honouring the Sri Lankans who sacrificed their lives for the Motherland was observed.

The official segment of the morning event concluded with singing of National Anthem of Sri Lanka in Tamil. Highlighting the Sri Lankan hospitality, the participants were offered a wide variety of traditional Sri Lankan refreshments.

The Independence Day Reception was held in the evening with the participation of Diplomatic Corps, Government officials, Business Community and well-wishers of the host country with the colourful dance performance again by the students of Anjana Rajapaksha Dance Academy.

The celebrations concluded with offering of the Heel Dhanaya with the participation of 16 Venerable Monks, a full-fledged Sanghika-Dhanaya.

70th Anniversary marked a week-long Consular Service to register 1139 births

Earlier to mark the 70th Anniversary of Independence of Sri Lanka, the Deputy High Commission in Chennai conducted a week-long Special Consular Service from 29th January to 02nd February 2018 wherein 1139 births were registered for the children born to Sri Lankan parents residing in various refugee camps in South India-- Madurai, Tirunelveli, Pudukottai, Karur, Vellore, Dindigul, Virudhunagar, Tiruvannamalai, Cuddalore, Erode and Tirupur districts.

In the year 2016, as part of its effort to promote the Government policy on National Integration and Reconciliation, the Deputy High Commission had initiated and commenced the Special Consular Service programme as a pilot project focusing its effort to support and encourage the registration of births of children born to Sri Lankan parents living in refugee camps, when it registered 1029 births.

During 2017, the Mission conducted 52 Special Consular Services on a weekly basis at the Chancery premises and issued 3520 birth certificates.

Among Sri Lankans living in refugee camps in Tamil Nadu, around 10,000 – 11,000 births reportedly remain unregistered, it is said. The Mission aims to continue the weekly Special Consular Service during 2018 as well, with a view to bringing the number of unregistered births to zero at the earliest possible.

The services of a Chennai-based Non-Governmental Organization OfFER (Organisation for Eelam Refugees’ Rehabilitation) is being utilized for the purpose.

- Asian Tribune -

70th Independence Day of Sri Lanka celebrated by Deputy High Commission in Chennai
70th Independence Day of Sri Lanka celebrated by Deputy High Commission in Chennai
70th Independence Day of Sri Lanka celebrated by Deputy High Commission in Chennai
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