|K. Chandana †
|Native name||K. චන්දන|
|Years of service||Unknown – 2008|
|Awards||Parama Weera Vibhushanaya|
K. Chandana (Sinhalese: K. චන්දන, died June 2008) was a soldier in the Sri Lanka Army. He was part of a Long Range Reconnaissance Patrol from the army's elite Special Forces Regiment, which infiltrated deep behind territory held by the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (commonly known as LTTE or Tamil Tigers) in June 2008. He was killed in a firefight during this operation and was posthumously awarded the Parama Weera Vibhushanaya, the country's highest military award for gallantry, for his actions which enabled the rest of his team to withdraw to safety.
Action in June 2008
A Lance Corporal attached to the army's 3rd Special Forces, Chandana was part of a six or eight-man Long Range Reconnaissance Patrol (LRRP) team that infiltrated into Tamil Tiger-held territory in northern Sri Lanka in June 2008.[note 1] The team carried out a successful ambush on the A9 highway between Mankulam and Kilinochchi, approximately 30 kilometres (19 mi) to 40 kilometres (25 mi) deep inside enemy territory at the time, and killed two Tamil Tiger leaders.
Having completed their mission, the team was on their way back to the army lines when they were spotted by Tamil Tiger units while crossing the Mankulam–Thunukkai road. They came under heavy fire, which injured one of the soldiers in the team. Chandana and the team leader, a Sergeant named Jayakodi, provided covering fire while the rest of the team withdrew, carrying the injured soldier. However, Chandana was severely injured in the firefight and was left unable to move by himself. He insisted that his team leader withdraw with the rest of the team lest he also would get captured or killed, and kept fighting by himself against the Tamil Tiger units which were converging on their position.
The team later returned to find Chandana, and found that he had been killed by a shot through his chest. However, they soon came under attack again and had to leave his body behind, and managed to reach the government-held area after several days.
Chandana was posthumously promoted to the rank of Corporal and recommended for the Parama Weera Vibhushanaya, Sri Lanka's highest military award for gallantry. The approval of his medal was announced in The Sri Lanka Gazette on 16 May 2012. It was presented to his next-of-kin on 19 May 2012 by President Mahinda Rajapaksa, at the celebrations marking the third anniversary of the end of the war. The citation for his Parama Weera Vibhushanaya states:
He voluntarily faced the enemy to receive firing bullets that were directed to destroy his comrades and sacrificed his life for protection of his own comrades and the beloved motherland. The entire nation is indebted to a war hero of this exceptional nature and his memory is thus immortalized.
- The exact composition of the team and dates of the operation are unclear.
- "PWV Citation – S/467722 L/Cpl Chandana K. 3 SF (Posthumous)" (PDF). The Ministry of Defence of Sri Lanka. Retrieved 23 March 2013.
- Perera, Tissa Ravindra (2010). මහසෝන් බළකායේ අභිරහස් මෙහෙයුම් – I [Operations of the Mahason Brigade – I] (in Sinhala). Colombo: Pahan Publishers. pp. 83–89.
- Blacker, David (4 June 2012). "Parama Weera: What it takes, and what it means". The Nation. Retrieved 23 March 2013.
- The Government of Sri Lanka (16 May 2012). "The Gazette of the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka (Extraordinary) – No. 758/21" (PDF). Sri Lanka Government Press. Retrieved 23 March 2013.
- De Silva, Nishan (19 May 2012). "රණවිරුවන් 15කට පරම වීර විභූෂණ සම්මාන". Neth FM News (in Sinhala). Retrieved 23 March 2013.
- "ආරක්ෂක තත්ව වාර්තාව" [Security Situation Report] (in Sinhala). Sri Lanka Army. 19 May 2012. Retrieved 23 March 2013.
- "SF Troops in Vavuniya Recall Memories of Fallen Fellow-Soldiers". Sri Lanka Army. 19 June 2012. Retrieved 23 March 2013.