Sri Lanka Army Women's Corps

The powerful Mind is the strongest weapon

History of the Sri Lanka Army Women's Corps Regiment

Sri Lanka Army Women's Corps was raised on 01st September 1979, a vision of late Commander of the army General JED Perera VSV D litt (Honorius Causa) FCMI, FI Mgt (SL) ndc psc, with the motto of 'Savi bala sith - Avi bala deth'. The Corps is consisted of two regular battalions and five volunteer battalions. The primary aim of raising Women's Corps was to provide telephone operators, computer operators, nurses and clerks, to release the male counterparts to the battle field. However, women soldiers were also employed on field duties later. Lieutenant Colonel AW Thambiraja was the first Commanding Officer of 1 SLAWC.

To meet the operational requirement in the field areas, the 02nd Volunteer Battalion was raised on 01st January 1996 at Ranasevapura, Anuradhapura. Few Officers from the Regular Force were attached to this unit to organize the command structure. Lieutenant Colonel H L Weerathunga VSV, SLAGSC was the first Commanding Officer of the unit. Troops of 2(V) SLAWC have mainly contributed their service to cordon and searchers, route clearing operations, piquet, camp guard and other internal security duties during the conflict with the LTTE.

With the rapid deterioration of the security situation in the Northern and Eastern provinces, 3(V) SLAWC was raised on 15th November 1997. The first Commanding Officer of 3(V) SLAWC was Lieutenant Colonel MWCJK Senevirathna SLAWC.

The regimental Centre Sir Lanka army Women’s Corps was established on 17 th November 1997 at Borella. Role of the regimental Centre is to coordinate and administer the troops of the Corps. Major WAA de Silva RSP USP was the first Colonel Commandant of the Regiment and Lieutenant Colonel MHPS Perera was the first Centre Commandant. Maj Gen S Kasturimudali RSP ndc psc is the present Colonel Commandant and Brigadier JKR Jayakodi RWP USP is the present Centre Commandant. The Regiment is developing rapidly with the dynamic guidance and distinguished command of Maj Gen S Kasturimudali RSP ndc psc and Brigadier JKR Jayakodi RWP USP. Regimental Centre has conducted special courses recently, to train instructors and clerks to develop the standard of the battalions. These measures would enable women’s Corps soldiers to develop their skills and capacities to obtain optimum results. The unique results achieved by the Regimental Centre so far, have been made possible owing to the dedication and selfless determination shown by the Officers and Other Ranks of the Corps.

With the escalation of the war, it was required to raise another Battalion to cater for woman soldiers in the Wanni Theater. The 4th Volunteer Battalion SLAWC was raised on 10th February 1999 at 21 Division and later moved to Madawachchiya. Lieutenant Colonel ANR Ovitipana SLAWC was the first Commanding Officer of the unit. Troops of 4(V) SLAWC were initially deployed in Mannar, Omanthei, Welioya and Settikulam under the Security Forces Head Quarters Wanni.

To fulfill the operational requirements in the Jaffna, 5(V) SLAWC was raised on 25th June 1999 at Kankasanthurai. The first Commanding Officer of the unit was Major HGW Padmasiri of GW (V). The troops of 5(V) SLAWC were mainly deployed in 51 Division, 52 Division, 53 Division and 55 Division, under the Security Forces Jaffna. Later, OC troops Women's Corps was formed in Security Forces Jaffna and 5(V) SLAWC was shifted to Monkey Bridge, Trincomalee. Officers and Other Ranks from all Volunteer units represented to constitute the OC troops SLAWC.

On 10th April 2009, 6(V) SLAWC was formed at Achchuweli. Lieutenant Colonel WMPR Wijesundara SLAPC was the first Commanding Officer of the unit. 6(V) SLAWC has contributed immensely to the Wanni humanitarian operation by way of distributing food to internally displaced people in rehabilitation centers, checking arrested LTTE members and checking people who are coming from the LTTE controlled areas.

With the growing need to move troops to the war-torn Jaffna Peninsula, a new Battalion was established in Myliddy Palaly; the 7 SLAWC, which was ceremonially formed at the 3(V) VIR camp premises and later moved to Myliddy at Security Forces Headquarters Jaffna. The unit raised its flag in Myliddy on 1st September 2010. 7 SLAWC is the 2nd Regular Battalion of SLAWC. Troops of 7 SLAWC are deployed in Security Forces Headquarters Jaffna, 51 Division, 52 Division, 515 Brigade and 552 Brigade at present. Major TC Kaththriarachchi SLAWC is the first Commanding Officer of the unit.

All these Battalions of SLAWC had served with pride and dedication during the past three decades of internal conflict in the country, to preserve the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Sri Lanka. At present, troops of SLAWC immensely contribute their services in clerical, field and a variety of ceremonial duties. Personnel of SLAWC continue to participate in sports and various other activities to bring pride to the Army as well as to the country. Members of Women’s Corps are not only brave soldiers, but also good wives, committed mothers and proud daughters who have set fine examples to the society at large, and they have rendered a valuable service to the motherland during the last three decades.