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New Army, Air Force Chiefs assume charge

Surprise move: Lt. Gen. Bipin Rawat was appointed Army chief by superseding two seniors.

Surprise move: Lt. Gen. Bipin Rawat was appointed Army chief by superseding two seniors.  

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The Army and the Air Force got new chiefs on Saturday, amid a raging controversy as the government has given the go-by to the convention of appointing the senior-most Army commanding-in-chief as the chief of the force.

General Bipin Rawat, who was selected ignoring the seniority of Lt. Gen. Praveen Bakshi and Lt. Gen. P.M. Hariz, took over as the new Chief of the Army Staff from General Dalbir Singh at a ceremony held in South Block on Saturday.

Gen. Rawat, a Gorkha Rifles officer, will be the 27 Army Chief. Gen. Rawat has held key appointments in the Army headquarters and with the U.N. peacekeeping force, and has extensive experience in Kashmir and in the Eastern region.

Air Chief Marshal Birender Singh Dhanoa took over as the 25 Chief of the Air Staff at a ceremony held at the Air Headquarters (Vayu Bhawan) here on Saturday. The fighter pilot was the Commanding Officer of a frontline ground-attack fighter squadron of MiG-21s that was involved in air operations during the “limited war” in Kargil against Pakistan in 1999.

“I feel honoured and privileged to have been entrusted with the responsibility to lead one of the finest Air Forces in the world. I will certainly be inspired by the exceptional achievements and the leadership of so many of my illustrious predecessors,” he said.

He said the IAF was transforming into a “strategic aerospace power with full-spectrum capability”.

He stressed the need for training and equipping the IAF to deter the sub-conventional threats. He reiterated the need for a focussed approach to enhancing aerospace safety and a better standard of living for its air-warriors.

 

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Printable version | Dec 11, 2019 11:17:26 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/New-Army-Air-Force-Chiefs-assume-charge/article16970134.ece

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