Tuesday - 21 January, 2020

Commanding Officer

Commanding Officer


Group Captain SDGM Silva
WWV,RSP, MSc (Miltary Stu), MSc (Strat Stu), BSc (Def Stu) fawc, psc

Born in Moratuwa in the Western Province in 1973, Group Captain Group Captain Sampathawaduge Deshapriya Gregory Marcelline Silva is a proud product of Saint Sebastian’s College in Moratuwa. He joined Sir John Kotelawala Defence Academy as an Officer Cadet in 1993 and later he was commissioned in the Sri Lanka Air Force as a Flying Officer in the General Duties Pilot Branch in 1997.

After completion of the training in year 1997 he has flown Chinese Y-12 and Russian AN-32B aircrafts till year 2000. Due to the huge vacuum in the attack helicopter pilots he was posted to the helicopter stream in the year 2001 and successfully completed the basic and advance helicopter conversion in Bell 206 and Bell 212. After completion of the conversion he was posted to No 09 Attack Helicopter Squadron for operational duties and flew Mi-24 helicopters. The Gp Capt Silva apprise himself with the battle experience to the categories of Wingman, pair leader and a formation leader. Later he has flown Bell 212 and Mi 17 helicopters.

In 2007 he was posted to Directorate of Operations at Air Force Headquarters as a Staff Officer. After the tenure at Air Force Headquarters he was posted back to No 09 Attack Helicopter Squadron in year 2008. Later he commanded the squadron in two tenures.

Gp Capt Deshapriya Silva has performed duties as a Directing Staff of the Air Wing of Defence Services Command and Staff College of Sri Lanka Armed Forces for two years. He was the Air Directing Staff of the first Sri Lanka Defence Services Command and Staff College team that conducted the Low Intensity Conflict Module at the Defence Services Command and Staff College, Bangladesh in year2012. In year 2015 he was posted to No 06 Helicopter Squadron, Air Force Base Anuradhapura as the Commanding Officer. Later, in May 2016 he was appointed as the Commanding Officer of the SLAF Station Palaly.

For the acts of bravery, unblemished conduct and operational service he was awarded with two gallantry medals Weera Wickrama Vibhushanaya and Rana Sura Paddakkama and several service medals.

Apart from the local military experience the Officer has followed several overseas and local training courses as well. He has followed the Flight Safety Officers and Aircraft Accident investigation Course in Pakistan and obtained Post Graduate Certificate in Aviation Safety from Karachi University. He has also followed the Junior Commanders’ Course in India, Law of the Armed Conflicts Course for Air Force Officers and United Nations Military Observer Course in Malaysia. Gp Capt Deshapriya Silva has followed Basic and Advanced instructor Courses in Law of the Armed Conflict and Human Rights conducted by Sri Lanka Army. He is a graduate of Defence Services Command and Staff Course in Bangladesh and has obtained the Master of Science Degree in Military Studies from Bangladesh University of Professionals. Gp Capt Silva is a Fellow of Air War College, Pakistan and has obtained his second Master of Science Degree in Defence and Strategic Studies from National Defence University, Pakistan. He has also obtained a Post Graduate Diploma in International Relations from Bandaranaike Centre for International Studies, Sri Lanka. Gp Capt Deshapriya Silva is also an Alumni of Asia Pacific Centre for Security Studies, Hawaii, USA.

In addition to that, he has presented two papers on “Utilization of SLAF Helicopters in joint operations to combat illegal sea activities and protection of maritime resources” at the inaugural Air Symposium of the Sri Lanka Air Force held in year 2015 and “Force Protection in Modern Times Challenges and Affordable Solutions” at the International Air Power Symposium, Pakistan Air Force in year 2016.

Gp Capt Silva is passionate on team work to achieve tasks and encourages officers and men to take part in sports activities. He is married to Nirmala and blessed with two lovely daughters.