76th Anniversary of Independence Day Celebrated in Ottawa

76th Anniversary of Independence Day Celebrated in Ottawa

The High Commission of Sri Lanka in Ottawa ceremonially celebrated the 76th anniversary of the Independence of Sri Lanka on 04 February 2024 at the official residence of the High Commissioner with the participation of religious dignitaries and community leaders.

The official ceremony commenced with the hoisting of the national flag by Acting High Commissioner of Sri Lanka in Canada Anzul Jhan followed by singing of the National Anthem of Sri Lanka. Thereafter, a two-minute of silence was observed in honour of Sri Lankan national heroes. The traditional oil lamp was lit by the invitees and the staff of the High Commission.

Multi- faith religious observances in accordance with Buddhist, Hindu, Islam, and Christian practices were conducted by Venerable Nagaswawe Sumanarathana Thero and Wilgamuwe Sumanasiri Thero of the Hilda Jayawardenaramaya Buddhist Monastery and Venerable Siyambalagoda Dhammika Thero from Ottawa Theravada Buddhist Vihara, Reverend Himanshu Gaur Swami of Hindu Temple of Ottawa Carlton, Reverend Hafiz Arshad Mohamed Auff  and Reverend Father Virgil Amirthakumar from Good shepherd Church.

The National Day messages of the President Ranil Wickremesighe, Prime Minister Dinesh Gunawardhana and Minister of Foreign Affairs M.U.M.Ali Sabry were read out by the staff.  Addressing the gathering, Acting High Commissioner Jhan appreciated the contributions made by the Sri Lankan community in Canada.

Speaking on  the increasing trade between Sri Lanka and Canada,  she said that  the     High Commission is  working  closely  with Canadian authorities to further  increase Sri Lanka's  export  products to cater  not only the ethnic market but also  the mainstream  market in Canada.  She also stated that Canadians of Sri Lankan origin also contribute to the Sri Lankan tourism market by home visits including visits to celebrate religious  functions.

The Acting High Commissioner further  said that the Mission  has  connected  many Canadian Sri Lankans with the students of Sri Lanka through the Office of the  Overseas  Sri Lankan Affairs (OOSLA). In this regard, she  appreciated the  contribution of Gaya Ngendra and Renujan Kannanesan  from Toronto and Chef  Chaminda Amabagaspitiye  from  Regina  for  volunteering to teach English and culinary enabling Sri Lankan students to upgrade their  skills.

Acting High Commissioner Jhan also announced that the Canada Network of Sri Lankan Academics will be lunched on 23 February 2024.  She  stated  that   the  High Commission headed by  H.E Harsha Kumara Navaratne worked tirelessly with State Minister  for High Education Suren Raghavan and Professor  Janaka Ruwanpura  from the  University of Calgary to  promote  collaborations  between  academics  of  both  countries.

The event concluded with an alms giving for all religious dignitaries and lunch for  community leaders.

High Commission of Sri Lanka


12 February 2024



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