By Rose Kenny
Major General Ruwan Kulatunga was appointed as the new Chief of National Intelligence yesterday.
Major General Kulatunga served as Commander of the Security Force – Wanni (SF-W) and also held the post as the 9th Colonel of the Regiment of the Sri Lanka Light Infantry (SLLI).
Major General Kulatunga first held the appointment as a Platoon Commander and was deployed on Counter Terrorist Operations in the North and East of Sri Lanka in December 1985. He had since then participated in most of the major military operations conducted in Sri Lanka while holding different responsibilities in various appointments commensurate to his ranks. He has a long service experience in the field of Counter Terrorist Operations and Counter Insurgency Operations. Major General Kulatunga had commanded an Infantry Battalion for over two years from 1996-1999 in Jaffna and Wanni during the densest period of operations against the terrorists. Later in December 2005 he was appointed an Infantry Brigade Commander which he held until September 2007 in Muhamalei, Jaffna. He was the Commander, 55 Infantry Division in 2012 in Jaffna. Finally, he had the privilege of commanding Security Forces (Wanni) Headquarters in 2016-2017, which is the largest field formation in the Sri Lanka Army.
He was the Commandant of Defence Services Command and Staff College and also held the post of Deputy Vice Chancellor of the General Sir John Kotelawala Defence University.
He also held the appointment as Commandant of the Sri Lanka Military Academy and was the Military Assistant to the former Commander of the Army.
Among his numerous staff appointments, Maj. Gen. Kulatunge also served as the Colonel General of Staff of the 53 Infantry Division (Reserve Strike Force) at Army Headquarters.
Maj. Gen. Kulatunge was appointed to fill the vacancy created by the resignation of DIG Sisira Mendis on June 08th.
Mendis, Director of Sri Lanka’s Centre for National Intelligence under the Ministry of Defense, had served as DIG of the Criminal Investigation Department (CID) and was also head of the Terrorism Investigation Division (TID) previously.
The national intelligence chief tendered his resignation after testifying last week before the parliamentary select committee. Testifying before the committee he said that the April 21 attacks could have been averted.