POMP & PAGEANTARY FOR VICTORY DAY PARADE
Text and Pictures by Pavithra Jovan De Mello
May 19th, 2012, Victory Day was celebrated yesterday with pomp and pageantary under the patronage of President Mahinda Rajapaksa. A massive display with the armed forces having rehearsed for days before the colourful event. The parade, according to the Defence Mnistry, consisted of 852 officers and 12,828 other rankers from the tri-forces, the police and Civil Defence Force. The military showcased its might with 148 vehicle columns including Infantry and Special Forces vehicles. Thirty-three aircraft of the Air Force conducted a flypast with 23 officers and 167 airmen. The Navy parade along the Galle Face coast had 72 vessels and consisting of 147 officers and 1,524 sailors.
Three years since being liberated from the clutches of terror the military prepared for days to honor the heroic acts of their fellow men and fallen heroes. As we followed the preparations including the parade rehearsals last Thursday, it was indeed an amazing sight, to see so many different regiments, tanks and armoured vehicles, the Navy ships in the distance and Airforce aircraft soaring above the Galle Face Green. Defence Secratary Gotabhaya Rajapaksa, along with the commanders of the armed forces were there to witness this event in the rehearsals to Saturday’s show.