The Sri Lanka Light Infantry (SLLI), the oldest Regiment in the Army which boasts a proud history of 137 years and possesses a number of Colours to this date added the highest significance and dignity to those SLLI laurels by enshrining them in a new state-of-the-art chamber inside the SLLI Regimental Headquarters at Panagoda on Wednesday (9) during a special ceremony.
Major General Ruwan Kulathunga, Colonel of the Regiment, SLLI participating as the Chief Guest, enshrined those Colours and deposited them in the newly-erected chamber, exclusively made for that purpose. The dignified ceremony was graced by SLLI council members and Senior Officers, including Major General R.A Nugera, Major General L.M Mudalige, Major General A.L.S.K Perera, Brigadier M.M Kithsiri, Commandant, Colonel D.A.K Dissanayaka, Deputy Commandant, Commanding Officers, Senior Regimental officers and a gathering of Other Rankers.
SLLI, then called the Ceylon Light Infantry (CLI) traces its roots as the mother of the Ceylon Army and is about 137 years of age. Its prominent contribution to the Boer War and the First World War - 1914 was rewarded with Royal Colours in 1922 by King Edward VII in England and again in 1954 by Queen Elizabeth II at Galle Face esplanade. At that royal occasion, 1 Battalion of CLI and 2 (Volunteer) CLI were awarded Queen's Colours just after Queen Elizabeth's coronation.
After Sri Lanka became a Republic, the Royal Colours and Regimental Colours awarded to both 1 Battalion of CLI and 2(V) CLI were deposited in the Regimental museum. Afterwards, 1 Battalion of the CLI and the 2(V) CLI received President's Colours and Regimental Colours on the Army Day (Oct 10) in 1978 from Sri Lanka's first executive President J.R Jayawardene for the first time in the Army history.
On Oct 26, 2015, HE the President Maithripala Sirisena at the invitation of the then Colonel of the Regiment SLLI, re-awarded President's Colours and Regimental Colours to the SLLI for the first time and the same simultaneously to the 1 Battalion of SLLI and 2(V) SLLI during a glittering ceremony that took place at the SLLI parade ground.