11:03pm on Saturday 1st April 2023
A new initiative known as the "Guwan Hamuda Herali Peraliya" was launched today (01 April 2023) under the auspicious of the President of the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka and Commander in Chief of the Armed Forces, Hon. Ranil Wickremasinghe, at SLAF Base Anuradhapura. The ceremony was attended by the Commander of the Air Force, Air Marshal Sudarshana Pathirana, the State Minister of Defence, Hon. Pramitha Bandara Thennakoon, the Senior Advisor on National Security, Hon. Sagala Ratnayake,  the Secretary to the Ministry of Defence, General Kamal Guneratne (Retd), Servicemen, Government Officials and School Children.

The project aims to address the current and future food crisis in Sri Lanka. In this light, the Sri Lanka Air Force shoulders by adding manpower and organizational strength to the "Guwan Hamuda Herali Peraliya", the revolutionary movement in cultivation, under the guidance of Commander of the Air Force, Air Marshal Sudarshana Pathirana and the supervision of Command Agro Officer, Air Commodore Eranda Gunewardane, with the goal of re-introducing jackfruit, a staple food of the ancestors, into society and using it as a remedy for any future food shortages. The jackfruit tree has a rich history in Sri Lanka and is revered as a holy tree. It has been called the "rice tree" as it is believed to have saved Sri Lankans from hunger during times of crisis.

The Sri Lanka Air Force has taken the lead in planting 3 million jackfruit saplings throughout the island and invites Non – Government Organizations to actively participate in this initiative. The project does not end with the planting of these saplings but also includes regular monitoring and distribution of the jackfruits to entrepreneurs who can prepare them for consumption in a systematic manner. A method has also been devised to promote jackfruit-based foods and beverages among the people.

During the launching ceremony, the book "Guwan Hamuda Herali Peraliya," which provides information about jackfruit cultivation, was presented to President Hon. Ranil Wickremasinghe. Overall, the initiative is an important step towards addressing food insecurity in Sri Lanka and ensuring a sustainable future for all citizens.



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