Chief of Army Staff of Pakistan General Qamar Javed Bajwa and Air Chief Marshal Zaheer Ahmed Baber Sidhu have expressed condolences upon the death of Chief of Defence Staff General Bipin Rawat , his wife and other officials of the Army. Tributes also poured in from diplomatic missions here.
General Nadeem Raza, CJCSC and General Qamar Javed Bajwa, COAS, expressed condolences on “the tragic death of CDS General Bipin Rawat, his wife and loss of precious lives in a helicopter crash,” said the Inter-Services Public Relations of Pakistan Armed Forces in a statement. Gen. Rawat was known for his frank remarks on Pakistan and China.
General Rawat and General Bajwa served together in a U.N. peacekeeping mission in Congo in 2008. While General Rawat led the North Kivu Brigade of the mission, General Bajwa commanded the South Kivu Brigade of the multinational peacekeeping operation.
Tributes also came from the diplomatic community based in India with the U.S. Embassy praising General Rawat for his leadership.
“As India’s first Chief of Defence Staff, Gen. Rawat spearheaded a historic period of transformation in the Indian military. He was a strong friend and partner of the U.S., overseeing a major expansion of India’s defence cooperation with the U.S. military. His legacy will continue on,” it said.
Russian Ambassador Nikolay Kudashev said, “Russia has lost a very close friend who played a big role in the promotion of our bilateral special and privileged strategic partnership. Grieving together with India. Goodbye, friend! Farewell, commander.”
The Singapore High Commission said, “His vision, candour and warmth will be missed.” Israeli Defence Minister Benny Gantz said, “I would like to extend condolences on behalf of Israel’s defence establishment and to express my personal grief to the people of India and to the Indian defence establishment on the loss of Chief of Defence Staff Bipin Rawat, his wife and others who perished in the tragic accident.”
Japanese Ambassador Satoshi Suzuki extended his “deepest condolences to the bereaved family members of the people killed in the accident”.