Ceremonial launch on 25 January under the patronage of President Sirisena
By Charumini de Silva
The Defence Ministry has launched ‘Virusara’ privilege card for the benefit of the families of fallen war heroes and differently-abled war heroes of tri-forces, police and the Civil Security Department who fought with their lives for the sovereignty of Sri Lanka.
The first leg of the ‘Virusara’ project will present 50,000 cards to war heroes. The ceremony to award these privilege cards to 5,000 war heroes and dependents will be held on 25 January at Temple Trees under the patronage of President Maithripala Sirisena and with the participation of Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe and the Defence State Minister Ruwan Wijewardene.
On the same historic occasion, in what could be considered a reconciliatory move, a total of 100 scholarships, each worth Rs.50,000 are to be distributed among war-affected children in the North and East.
Government spokesman Dr. Rajitha Senaratne addressing the weekly Cabinet briefing said the information presented by President Maithripala Sirisena in his capacity as the Defence Minister, was approved by the Cabinet of Ministers on Wednesday.
The ‘Virusara’ privilege card is unique in its mission in that it enables the quick and due identification of those Ranaviru family members and the differently-abled, numbering over 300,000 wherever they move about in society.
The Defence Ministry with a view of resuscitating immortal memories of those heroes of contemporary times has decided to offer this additional recognition, considering it as a project of national importance.
In addition the Ministry has plans to sustain this welfare relief covering all family members of the war heroes and the differently-abled islandwide under this project, on a staggered basis.
Taking due cognisance of the unparalleled contribution of these unsung heroes and their family members and consequent upon a conceptual notion, mooted by State Minister of Defence Ruwan Wijewardene with the blessings of President Maithripala Sirisena, a special ‘Virusara’ privilege card will enable them to enjoy special benefits in purchasing consumer goods and services such as health, education, banking, insurance, leasing, and so forth in more than 45 leading commercial ventures and relevant spheres of business countrywide.