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PROJECT ONE - Orders, Decorations and Medals relating to Sri Lanka (Ceylon)
from 1795 to the present.


A sample of a Gallantry Decoration from Part Two of Project One

WEERA WICKREMA VIBUSHANAYA (WWV)

Instituted by Presidential Proclamation in Gazette No 156/5 of 1.9.1981

Description: A medal of near oval form.

Obverse: Bears in relief, a square shaped column head as seen in Mihintale with the four corners protruding outwards. In the centre are three Sinhala warriors in a warlike posture surrounded by an outer border of a curved creeper leaf motif (GETALIYAPATH).

Reverse: Bears in relief the Armorial Ensign of the Republic of Sri Lanka in the center comprising the Heraldic Lion of Sri Lanka surrounded by a lotus petal border within a sheaf of paddy, surmounted by the wheel of Doctrine, with the filled vessel at the base, with a depiction of the sun in splendour and the Moon, on the right and left respectively, surrounded by the legend 'FOR GALLANTRY AND MERITORIOUS ACTS' inscribed in Sinhala and Tamil and the year of institution, 1981 inscribed below, and the whole surrounded by the design as depicted in the obverse.

Metal: Silver.

Suspension: Plain fixed suspender.

Ribbon: 1 inches in width. Mid yellow with three red (described as being wine in colour) stripes, each 3/16 of an inch in width, one of which is in the centre, and the other two on either side.

Bars: Awarded for those who qualify on a subsequent occasion to receive this Decoration. In undress uniform, when ribbons only are worn, the wearing of a small gilted Lotus on the ribbon denotes the grant of a bar.

The Decoration shall be granted to all ranks of the Regular and Volunteer Forces of the Army, Navy and Air Force of the Republic of Sri Lanka for individual acts of gallantry and conspicuous bravery of a military nature of a high order in the face of the enemy performed voluntarily whilst on active service without regard for his own security with the objective of safeguarding thereby the lives of his comrades or facilitating the operational aim of his force or for a meritorious act or a series of acts of a humane nature of a high order displayed in saving life from drowning, fire and rescue operations in mines, floods and similar calamities under circumstances of bodily injury or danger to the life of the rescuer, the degree of courage and promptitude displayed being taken into consideration, as recommended by the Commander of the Army, the Commander of the Navy or the Commander of the Air Force to receive the award under the terms and conditions defined in the gazette.

The act of gallantry, for which the Decoration is to be conferred, should be witnessed by no less than three persons, and a Board of not less than three senior officers nominated by the Service Commanders will examine the recommendations.

This Decoration is worn on the left breast, and it will be worn immediately after the Weerodhara Vibushanaya. It can be awarded posthumously to the lawful next-of-kin of the recipient or to a person nominated by the next-of-kin.

The names of the persons upon whom the Decoration is conferred shall be published in the Gazette of the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka and a Register of all such recipients shall be maintained under the directions of H.E. The President, and the Personal Number, Rank and Name of the recipient, together with the date of award to be recorded in it.

The Decoration shall be conferred by H.E. the President by a citation under his/her hand and seal and the award shall be made personally by H.E. the President.

The names of the Persons upon whom the Decoration is conferred shall be published in the Gazette of the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka and a Register of all such recipients shall be maintained under the directions of H.E. the President.

Every recipient of the Decoration shall be entitled to use the post-nominal
letters 'WWV'.

If a recipient of this Decorations suffers death by sentence of a court-martial or other Military, Naval or Air Force Court, or is cashiered, dismissed, removed, or discharged with disgrace or ignominy from the Armed Forces, or is convicted of treason, sedition, mutiny, cowardice, desertion, or disgraceful conduct of an unnatural kind or is dismissed or discharged for misconduct, or who while subject to Military, Naval or Air Force law, is convicted by the civil power, he shall forfeit the Decoration, unless H.E. The President shall direct otherwise.

Obverse

Reverse

 

Some examples of recipients of the WWV

Lt.Col. C Hettiarachchi WWV, trekked seventeen miles with wounded soldiers despite being seriously wounded from Weli Oya, 15.7.1990.

Sgt. L M Marasinghe WWV. Killed in action 10.7.1991 at Elephant Pass when he threw a grenade into an enemy bulldozer, blowing it up.

Sqn.Ldr. L M Waidyaratne WWV. SLAF.
In July 1990 did casualty evacuation in the Jaffna Fort in very adverse conditions.

Capt. A B Seneviratne WWV. Broke siege of enemy on camp, collected and marched men out of siege inspite of being badly wounded.

1996 -2002, Charles Ameresekere. Content may not be copied by any form without the prior consent of the Author.