General Bipin Rawat is first-ever India Chief of Defence Staff

Photo: General Bipin Rawat, India’s first-ever Chief of Defence Staff.

New Delhi: India today appointed General Bipin Rawat, Chief of Army Staff, as the first-ever Chief of Defence Staff (CDS). Rawat will take over his new role in the government tomorrow.

On Saturday, the Narendra Modi government had amended the laws pertaining to the army, navy and air force to provide a three-year tenure to the officer holding office of the Chief of Defence Staff and retirement at the age of 65 years, whichever is earlier.

This move was seen as clearly paving the way for Rawat being appointed the first CDS, which was confirmed by the government today through a press statement.

Photo: Government of India statement on General Rawat’s appointment as CDS.

Only on Sep. 27, Rawat had taken over as the Chairman, Chiefs of Staff Committee (COSC), post that will now convert into the appointment as CDS and Permanent Chairman COSC.

Rawat, who became Chief of Army Staff three years ago, was set to retire from service tomorrow, but will now enjoy an extension in service of another three years.

On Dec. 24, the Cabinet Committee on Security had approved the contours, role and responsibilities of the new post of CDS. The details can be read here.

Rawat, in his career spanning 41 years, has had an illustrious military profile with vast operational and staff exposure. As the Chief of Army Staff, he has been a member of COSC since January 2017.

During his tenure in COSC, the Committee has deliberated on a number of diverse issues ranging from operations, training and administration, with an aim to enhance jointmanship and integration. General Bipin Rawat, with his foresight and professional acumen, has contributed immensely to the committee with his non-partisan views on critical issues.

On taking over as Chairman COSC, Rawat had said he would focus on operationalising the appointment of Chief of Defence Staff (CDS), enhance tri-service integration, stimulate simultaneous growth of the Services, rapid operationalisation and synchronisation of modern war fighting capabilities to ensure that the armed forces are well aligned to the future.

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