Sri Lanka’s first-ever Paralympic medal winner felicitated in London

Monday, 10 September 2012 00:03 -     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

Bronze medal-winner Lance Corporal UDP Pradeep Sanjaya of the 4th Sri Lanka Sinha Regiment was felicitated by the Sri Lanka High Commission, London, when the Paralympic team and the officials and coaches visited the Mission on Friday.

The Men’s 400m T46 runner Pradeep Sanjaya was presented with an engraved trophy by High Commissioner Dr. Chris Nonis, to mark what was a historic achievement by the soldier who had been seriously injured in Kilinochchi during the terrorist conflict in Sri Lanka.

President Mahinda Rajapaksa personally spoke to the medal winner by telephone during the presentation ceremony to congratulate him on the honour he has brought to the nation.

Speaking at the presentation ceremony, High Commissioner Dr. Nonis said it was a signal achievement for the young soldier and equally for the country and the people of Sri Lanka, for it was the first time that Sri Lanka had won a medal at the Paralympics and more so in the country in which these games originated.

Dr. Nonis said that the enthusiasm, courage and determination shown by Pradeep Sanjaya, and indeed the entire team, to overcome physical disabilities, was a matter of great pride, and an inspiration to the younger generation.

He also congratulated the Chef de Mission, Brigadier Rajitha Ampemohotti, Colonel Manchanayake, Brigadier Wickramasinghe, Colonel Deepal Herath and the other Paralympic officials and coaches for their exemplary leadership.

Sir Peter Heap, President of the ‘Friends of Sri Lanka’ association, and Lady Olga Maitland also spoke at the event, which followed on from the previous week’s event at the High Commission held to encourage the Paralympic team. They congratulated the team for their perseverance and dedication, and said it was a great tribute to Sri Lanka in the post-conflict era.