Independence celebrations held at Independence Square

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The 72nd Independence Day celebrations will be held at the Independence Square graced by President Gotabaya Rajapaksa on a grand scale on February 4, Public Administration and Home Affairs State Minister Mahinda Samarasinghe said yesterday.

This was the first time an Independence Day celebration was being held at the Independence Square since the last one was held in 2007, he added.

At 08.08 in the morning, a floral tribute will be offered to first Prime Minister of independent Sri Lanka late D. S. Senanayake.

Jayamangala Gatha and ‘Devo Wassathu Kalena’ are scheduled to be sung at 8.30. a.m.

Minister Samarasinghe told the media yesterday that after the religious observances, a two minutes silence will be observed in memory of all patriots who have made the supreme sacrifice to preserve and protect the freedom, unity, sovereignty and territorial integrity of Sri Lanka.

At 8.40 in the morning of February 4, there will be a 21-gun salute in honour of the Head of State, the Commander of Armed Forces and President Rajapaksa followed by the singing of the National Anthem by 100 school children.

The March Past and the Cultural Pageant by the three armed forces, the Police, Civil Security Force and National Cadet Force will be started at 9.10 a.m.

There will be an all-night Pirith chanting on Sunday, February 02 and almsgiving the following day.

Buddhist religious ceremonies will be held on the same day at Dharmakeerthi Aramaya at Kollupitiya, Hindu religious ceremonies at Sri Bhadrakali Kovil at Colombo 6, Islam religious observances at Jumma Masjid Kollupituiya and Christian services at the Baptist Church, Bagatale Road, Colombo 3.