4:19pm on Tuesday 2nd May 2023
The longstanding ties between the Government of India (GOI) and the Government of Sri Lanka (GOSL) have been a great source of strength for the intellectual, cultural, religious and linguistic interaction over the past 2500 years. Extending such legacy of generosity and assistance shared by both nations have amply demonstrated that Indian Air Force has provided nearly 300 technical courses for the past 20 years  in its Type Training Schools for Officers and Airmen of Sri Lanka Air Force  as proof of this long standing defence cooperation.

On the culmination of the request made by commander of the Air Force Air Marshal Sudarshana Pathirana during the recently concluded Defense Dialogue between India and Sri Lanka to enhance the operational capabilities of the military forces, GOI expressed its preliminary approval for the donation of two sets of AN-32 propellers from Indian Air Force. Today (2 May 2023), it was made to witness the signing of the official documents to handover the two sets of AN-32 propellers to Sri Lanka Air Force by Chief of the Air Staff of Indian Air Force Air Chief Marshal VR Chaudhari and Commander of the Air Force in an Acquisition Ceremony held at the No. 2 Heavy Transport Squadron premises in SLAF Base Katunayake. This assistance will be noteworthy to enhance the operational capabilities of the Sri Lanka Air Force paving way to sustain the serviceability of the AN-32 aircraft fleet for operational requirements of transportation of passengers, cargo, air maintenance, scheduled services, and overseas operations.

The official plaques were exchanged between Chief of the Air Staff and Commanding Officer of No 02 Squadron Group Captain Nuwan Welagedara to mark this admirable event of the Squadron’s history. After concluding the formalities, an interactive session was conducted with the graceful presence of Chief of the Air Staff and officers of the SLAF Base Katunayake which was followed by lunch. This event was attended by the Deputy Chief of Staff Air Vice Marshal Roshan Biyanwila, Director General Aeronautical Engineering Air Vice Marshal Ranjith Senanayake, Base Commander SLAF Base Katunayake Air Vice Marshal Lasitha Sumanaweera, officers and a cross section of other ranks of the Base.

The line-up of events for the Acquisition Ceremony culminated with the traditional banquet which was held at the Eagles’ Lagoon View, Negambo. The distinguished guests, including the visiting Air Chief, his Spouse, and other IAF dignitaries, graced the gala evening. Upon arrival, the Air Force Commander, Air Marshal Sudarshana Pathirana, and Chairperson of SLAF Seva Vanitha Unit Mrs. Charmini Pathirana warmly welcomed them at the entrance. During the formal speech, the Visiting Air Chief assured to extend the continuous support to SLAF in future. During the vote of thanks, the commander of the Air Force highly appreciated the generous contribution and solidarity of the Indian Air Force that has been committed for the region and particularly to the SLAF. Members of the Air Force Board of Management along with their ladies, a cross section of serving Officers participated for this evening.

Evening banquet at Eagles’ Lagoon View


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