Thursday, May 29, 2014

INS Kolkata Gets Ready For Commissioning In July, Followed By INS Kochi In December This Year

Under Indian Navy's P-15A, the lead INS Kolkata-class warship, INS Kolkata, will be commissioned in Mumbai in July this year and her commissioning Commanding Officer is Capt Tarun Sobti. This is the same ship on which a fire broke out in March this year, killing an officer, Commander K Wadhwa while the second guided missile destroyer in this Class , INS Kochi will be commissioned in December this year, and her commissioning Commanding Officer is Capt Gurcharan Singh, who was also the commissioning Executive officer (second-in-command) of INS Shivalik.

Akash Surface-To-Air Supersonic Missile Intercepts Moving Target In Ripple Mode

Three Akash missiles were launched today i.e. 28th May 2014 from the Integrated Test Range (ITR), Balasore, on tow body target of Lakshya (pilotless target aircraft) moving at “low altitude far boundary” and ripple mode missions. The missiles intercepted the fast moving and maneuvering small RCS targets within small interval of five seconds in ripple mode. Indian Air Force teams operated the deliverable Akash missile system including targets. The missiles were successfully guided by multifunction phased array radar developed by Electronics and Radar Development Establishment (LRDE) a DRDO Lab and produced by Bharat Electronics Limited (BEL). The missiles developed by Defence Research and Development Laboratory (DRDL) along with 13 other DRDO Laboratories and produced by Bharat Dynamics Limited. The launchers were developed by R&DE (Engrs), a DRDO lab and produced by Tata Power and L&T.
Shri Avinash Chander, Scientific Advisor to Raksha Mantri congratulated all the teams from DRDO, Production agencies and Indian Air Force for successfully organizing the event and fulfilling the mission objectives of the evaluation tests on deliverable equipment. He also stated that various industries across the country are engaged in production of Akash subsystems of military grade/aerospace quality systems and have emerged successfully in meeting the stringent requirements.

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Photos : New Defence Minister Meets Service Chiefs

Shri Arun Jaitley took over as Defence Minister here today. On his arrival at the Ministry of Defence in South Block, Shri Jaitley was received by Defence Secretary Shri RK Mathur and other senior officials. After taking over as the Defence Minister, Shri Jaitley informally interacted with the media and outlined the priority areas of the government. He said “Security of India is a matter of prime importance and predominantly the external security of India is the responsibility of this Ministry”. For this he stated that “preparedness and support to our ArmedForces and speeding up all equipment required for their support are going to be the priority areas as far as our government is concerned”. He also remarked that over the last few years some of the areas in the Ministry had slowed down and therefore, expediting them will be a matter of top priority. 

Replying to a question of enhancing the FDI limit beyond the existing 26 percent, he said, this is an issue which will be dealt with by his two Ministries and added that it has already come up in his preliminary discussions in the Finance Ministry, today. 

Later, the Defence Minister took stock of various developments in the Ministry by interacting with the Defence Secretary Shri RK Mathur, Secretary (Defence Production) Shri GC Pati, Secretary Ex-Servicemen Welfare Smt Sangita Gairola and Scientific Advisor to Defence Minister Shri Avinash Chander. This was followed by the three Service Chiefs calling on the Defence Minister in his chamber. Shri Jaitley also took a meeting of senior officials of the Ministry, where he discussed the working of the Ministry and other important issues.

IAF MiG 21 Aircraft Crash

One MiG-21 (Bis) Aircraft of the IAF crashed about 10 Kms short of Awantipur Airbase on 27 May 2014 at about 1048 hrs. The Pilot airborne from Srinagar was on a routine training sortie. A Court of Inquiry has been ordered to investigate into the cause of the accident. 

Sunday, May 25, 2014

Italian Court Upholds India's Claims To Recover Fully Bank Guarantees in AWIL Case

The appellate court in Milan, Italy, in its judgement on Friday, 23 May, 2014, has substantially upheld the claims of Government of India against AgustaWestland International Ltd (AWIL), A W Spa and Deutsche Bank, Italy on the encashment of Bank Guarantees and Performance Bond in the VVIP helicopter case. The court also ordered AWIL and A W Spa to reimburse legal costs of Government of India. MoD is studying the order and will take immediate steps to recover the amounts fully.

Friday, May 23, 2014

Boeing Delivers The Fourth P8i To The Indian Navy

Boeing  has delivered the fourth P-8I maritime patrol aircraft to India on schedule, fulfilling the first half of a contract for eight aircraft.

The aircraft departed from Boeing Field in Seattle and arrived May 21 at Naval Air Station Rajali, where it joined three P-8Is currently undergoing operational evaluation.
“This marks an important milestone -- the halfway point for P-8I deliveries to India,” said Dennis Swanson, BDS vice president in India. “The program’s success the past year is really a testament to the great work between Boeing, the Indian Navy and industry.”         
Based on the company’s Next-Generation 737 commercial airplane, the P-8I is the Indian Navy variant of the P-8A Poseidon that Boeing has developed for the U.S. Navy.
“The Indian Navy is putting the first three P-8Is through their paces operationally, and the P-8I delivered today will begin flight trials in the coming months,” said Leland Wight, Boeing P-8I program manager.
The P-8I incorporates not only India-unique design features, but also India-built subsystems that are tailored to the country’s maritime patrol requirements. In order to efficiently design and build the P-8I and the P-8A, the Boeing-led team is using a first-in-industry, in-line production process that draws on the company’s Next-Generation 737 production system.
The P-8I features open system architecture, advanced sensor and display technologies, and a worldwide base of suppliers, parts and support equipment. P-8I aircraft are built by a Boeing-led industry team that includes CFM International, Northrop Grumman, Raytheon, Spirit AeroSystems, BAE Systems and GE Aviation.

Indian Army Chief Visits South Western Command

The Chief of the Army Staff visited Headquarters South Western Command on 23 May 2014. Lt Gen Arun Kumar Sahni, GOC-in-C, South Western Command briefed the Army Chief on the state of operational preparedness of the South Western Army. 

General Bikram Singh later interacted with senior functionaries of HQ South Western Command and addressed officers of the station on issues facing the Army & collective efforts taken to achieve well drawn out key area results. Emphasising upon core values of honesty, truthfulness, sincerity, commitment & dedication, the Chief called upon all officers to instill greater pride in the service across rank and file. The COAS expressed satisfaction on efforts being made to ensure that the Army remains a potent, responsive and accountable instrument of national power, the vision enunciated by him as head of the organisation. The Army Chief also emphasised on value based leadership in accordance with the legacy of Indian Army. He emphasised on the requirement of regular interaction with veterans to imbibe rich ethos of our predecessors. 

Thursday, May 22, 2014

Indo-Singapore Annual Bilateral Joint Naval Exercise - SIMBEX 2014 , Underway In Andaman

The 2014 edition of the ‘SIMBEX 14’ series of annual bilateral naval exercises between the Indian Navy (IN) and the Republic of Singapore Navy (RSN), is being conducted in the Andaman Sea from 22 May to 28 May 14. Hosted by IN, SIMBEX 14 will be the 21st in the series, designed to enhance inter-operability and mutual understanding between the two navies.
Bilateral Naval cooperation between the two navies was first formalised when RSN ships began training in Anti-Submarine Warfare (ASW) with the Indian Navy in 1994. SIMBEX is an acronym for ‘Singapore Indian Maritime Bilateral Exercise’. Since its inception in 1993, SIMBEX has grown in tactical and operational complexity. It has transcended the traditional emphasis on Anti-Submarine Warfare (ASW) to more complex maritime exercises, involving various facets of naval operations like Air Defence, Air and Surface practice firing, Maritime Security and Search and Rescue Operations. Both navies derive considerable value form the conduct of SIMBEX. Inter-operability between the two navies has matured to a point where Standard Operating Procedures for the conduct of exercise have been formalised.
This year, the Indian Navy is being represented by IN ships Kuthar and Karmuk from the Eastern Naval Command. In addition, a Maritime Patrol Aircraft and a Helicopter each from Andaman and Nicobar Command is also participating in the exercise. The Singapore Navy is represented by the missile corvette, “Valour’ and the patrol vessel, ‘Independence’. The RSN ships are making a port call at Port Blair form 22 to 23 May 14 for harbour phase of the exercise. The ships will sail for the sea phase on 24 May 14 and will be visiting Port Blair again from 26 to 28 May 14 for debrief and closing ceremony of the exercise.
IN and RSN share a long standing relationship with regular professional interactions. This includes exchange programmes, staff talks and cross-attendance at courses. SIMBEX is an important outcome of this comprehensive process of bilateral engagement and it is through these interactions that the two navies continue to reinforce the strong maritime bridges of friendship that connect our respective nations. 

Bi-Annual Maritime Coastal Security Exercise- Sagar Kavach, Held

The bi-annual maritime coastal security exercise introduced post 26/11 was conducted on 21-22 May 2014 across the State of Gujarat and Union Territory of Daman & Diu coastline. The maritime security exercise was conducted to ascertain the  preparedness and synergy between coastal security stakeholders. The exercise along the 1600 km Gujarat coastline was coordinated by the Coast Guard Regional Headquarters (NW), Gandhinagar.

The exercise instituted for validating the coastal security Standard Operating Procedures by all stake holders for protection of Vulnerable Areas and points including effective usage of coastal security telephone helpline number ‘1093’. The two day long exercise utilised ships and aircrafts of the Coast Guard and Navy, UAVs of Navy,Air Force and Gujarat Police, personnel from Police Commandos and patrol boats of BSF, Marine Police and Customs. In addition the Port Security Boats and Harbour Tugs were also deployed for the exercise.  The efficacy of men and material was put to test for alertness towards gap free coastal security apparatus to prevent any infiltrations by non-state actors in our coastal areas.

The exercise achieved synergy in operations in all spheres of coastal security against threats, ranging from unauthorized access of vessels through sea using commandeered fishing boats, capture of high value targets, infiltration through creeks, attacks on offshore installations/ SPMs, Port Security, hostage crisis, blockades along coastal highways and threat to industries along the coast.

The sustained efforts were put in by all stake holders which also included the Army component, Fisheries department of Gujarat State, Gujarat Maritime Board, Kandla Port Trust, Mundra Port, Pipavav Port, Director General of Shipping, Director General of Lighthouses and Lightships, Airport Authorities, NCB, CRPF, GSDMA and Industries Department.

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

My Visit To Chinese Naval Frigate - Weifang, Before Her Port Call To Eastern Naval Command

Recently the above Chinese naval frigate - Weifang, was on visit to the Vishakhapatnam-based Eastern Naval Command, but I visited it in July last year, and also met its Commanding Officer- Capt Li Jing Tao (CO of Weifang ) and also Deputy Chief of Staff North Sea Fleet Rear Admiral Wang Lin , who presented me a ship rudder-steering wheel, as a momento for my late father (who was also a naval officer). 

RIP : Maratha Li Soldier Martyred In Akhnoor At LoC

Sepoy Bhikale Uttam Balu of 2 Maratha Light Infantry, who laid down his life at the LoC in Akhnoor sector, J&K on May 18, 2014 

Monday, May 19, 2014

The Modi Phenomenon !! The How, Why & What Of It

I rarely deviate from defence issues on Chindits, this is one I couldn't help writing about, from whatever little knowledge I have about politics. I dont know much about politics, but I guess General Elections-2014 in India for 16th Lok Sabha, has made each of us a little bit of a politician, taught us some amount of politics and united the country in electing its leader.

The man above-Narendra Damodardas Modi, became the Prime Minister of this country, the day he was named the PM candidate of the BJP, by his Party, some time in September 2013, in Goa. I remember, it was raining that day. There was a face to leadership, right there in front and people knew who, what to vote for !! I think times have moved ahead, and with so many first time youth voters, now the time has come to have US Presidential-Style elections, where the contesting Party would have a face, for whom voters would vote and thats what Modi cashed in on, and emerged victorious. Every young voter wants to know, who will be PM of the Party he's voting for.

We are used to beng led, and here was a Party providing us leadership, even before the elections. We may be superb individually, but we need a leader. And thats what worked for Modi..

I realy dont know what happened in 2002 in Godhra, but the man has shown tremendous statemanship--- in first getting his name cleared from the 2002 massacre, got himself named by the Party after crushing any dissent from within, got acceptance for himself inside the nation through his massive campaign, beginning with social media, and transcended borders, even before the results were out there were feelers from all across the world that he was acceptable !! Not once was he reluctant, wanted to be PM, and worked hard towards it, to make it happen. Not once did he use any polarised language during his rallies, was careful in addressing and reaching out to the minorities. Everything worked for him, including the negative campaign run by his adversaries also went in his favour. 

Even astrologers predicted that he has the makings of a PM. Without actual campaigning in his own constituencies, he won hands-down in both, with ease!!

My reading tells me that people in different places voted for different reasons. In eastern UP I heard people saying-- 'Dabangg neta hai' , pointing clearly that they wanted a strong leader, in western UP the requirement was -- 'If Modi can give Gujratis 24 hrs electricity, we just want 18 hrs uninterrupted, we 'll be happy',  my military friends told me that they were very happy with a strong leader, as he would act like a deterrent for a hostile neighbourhood. Some people told me that they voted for Modi, as there was no other option, they were left with no choice. There's no doubt that he's a strong leader, reminds me of Indira Gandhi. 

The votes came only because of him, as I remember the 2004 election also, where Advani was leading from the front and his tag-line was -- 'India Shining...Feel Good Factor' ...Advani led the campaign and BJP lost miserably. Dont know who was Advani's campaign manager and advisor. Advani got inside an air-conditioned deluxe 'Rath' and travelled the entire country but couldnt garner votes. Maybe Modi was intelligent to learn from Advani's mistakes, and was careful to avoid them.

Lets all get ready for change and for Modi's moment of triumph and glory, which is here and now !! I wish him well.

Chinese Navy Admirals Visit Headquarters Eastern Naval Command

Rear Admiral Han Xiaohu, Commander PLAN Training Ship Task Group, and Rear Admiral Li Jianjun, Assistant Chief of Staff and Political Commissar of PLA Dalian Naval Academy visited the Headquarters, Eastern Naval Command today, 19 May 14. The Flag Officers of the PLA Navy called on Vice Admiral Anil Chopra, Flag Officer Commanding-in-Chief, and held discussions on issues of mutual interest. They were accompanied by the Ambassador of Peoples Republic of China to India, Mr. Wei Wei, and the Defence Attache of China to India, Major General Cai Ping. 

The Flag Officers are embarked onboard PLA Navy ships Zhenghe and Weifang that are on a four day visit to Visakhapatnam. During their stay here, the Officers and crew of the Ship visited ships of the Eastern Fleet and the Kursura submarine museum. Ships of the PLA Navy were also open to visits from the Indian Naval personnel and their families. The PLA Navy Band performed alongside the Indian Naval Band at a concert held at Samudrika Naval auditorium today, to an appreciative audience of personnel from both the Navies. Performances by the two Bands were followed, befittingly, by a collective rendering of the World Community song, A Small World After All. In addition, the PLA and Indian Navy teams engaged in friendly matches on the sports field. 

Two ships of the PLA Navy, Zhenghe and Weifang, with Rear Admiral Han Xiaohu, Commander PLAN Training Ship Task Group, and Rear Admiral Li Jianjun, Assistant Chief of Staff and Political Commissar of PLA Dalian Naval Academy embarked, arrived Visakhapatnam today, 17 May, on a four-day maiden visit to the Eastern Naval Command. 

The visit will encompass interaction between personnel of both the Navies in various professional, cultural, social and sports events. Apart from engaging in friendly basketball and football matches with the Eastern Fleet teams, the PLA Navy personnel will also visit places of interest in Visakhapatnam. The Admirals of the PLA Navy are scheduled to call on Vice Admiral Anil Chopra, Flag Officer Commanding-in-Chief, Eastern Naval Command.

Commisioned in 1987, Zhenghe is a Training Ship that has Commander Ye Kaihua at the helm, and the Frigate Weifang is commanded by Captain Zhang Zaige. The ships are on a good will visit to four Asian Nations including Myanmar, Indonesia and Vietnam, and are scheduled to depart Visakhapatnam on Tuesday, 20 May.

'Rukmini'– Naval Communication Satellite Fully Integrated For Network Centric Ops – Says Naval Chief

On his maiden visit to Headquarters, Western Naval Command, Mumbai,Admiral Rabinder Kumar Dhowan, Chief of the Naval Staff, inspected animpressive ceremonial parade conducted at INS Shikra today morning.He complimented the officers and men of the command for maintaininghighest professional standards whilst taking up the challenges on thewestern seaboard in all operational activities. He further urged themen to work selflessly as team so as to meet the myriad of challengesbeing faced by the nation especially on the maritime front.

Inhis address, he emphasised the necessity of recognising the 21stcentury as 'the century of the seas' and the responsibility of IndianNavy thereof in enforcing the defence of maritime boundaries as alsothe maritime interests of the country in the Indian Ocean Region. TheAdmiral brought out that the nation's economy is indirectly linked toseas and the onus of safeguarding the seas rests squarely with theIndian Navy.
Inhis address the Admiral appreciated the Western Naval Command formaintaining a high tempo of operations including TROPEX – 14,operationalisation of INS Vikramaditya and optimal exploitation ofRukmani- Navy's Communication satellite, which gives a tremendousboost and acts as a force multiplier to the 'Network CentricOperations (NCO)'.

The CNS also addressed officers, sailors and civilians of the command duringhis visit. He exhorted them to continuously work towards maintaininga high level of preparedness and to diligently follow SOPs for safetyand security of naval assets. The Admiral was also briefed on thevarious activities (both operational and administrative) of thecommand including salvage operations of INS Sindhurakshak. TheAdmiral also visited a few ships and submarines in the NavalDockyard

Saturday, May 17, 2014

Parting Shot : Defence Minister Says,' MoD only Ministry Which Was Above Politics, Leaving Behind Armed Forces In Best Ever Condition/Position'

Today was farewell tea of outgoing Defence Minister AK Antony, for which I was invited directly by the Minister (not by his spokesperson). Antony conceded Congress' defeat in the 2014 LS polls, said writing was on the wall, they knew they would lose. 

Someone asked him about his best and worst moments, anything that he regretted, any unfinished task, he said he was largely satisfied.

Media farewell was his last job on his last day today, as meeting the media was the first thing he did on his first day, so as a gesture of completion of his tenure, he had to wind up, again with the media, today.

He said this was the only Ministry which was the least tensed, meaning everything was cordial, he had excellent relations with the armed forces, and the services among themselves, under him. He also said he kept MoD above politics, there was no politics , only in this Ministry, gave the example of how army did rescue and relief during disasters, without asking victims their religion (eg Assam).

'Armed forces are in superb condition, they are at their best ever', said Antony.

He ducked political questions. He'll devote more time to his State of Kerala. Being a Rajya Sabha MP, he'll be in Parliament. Said Congress will be back with a bang. I said Sir, will the country see an Antony wave in 2019, he said nothing.

He didnt show any remorse over Naval Chief DK Joshi's resignation, when someone asked if he regretted.

He also counted One rank one pension as his achievement, something that is only announced, not yet implemented, something which recently drew the ire of ex-servicemen.

Friday, May 16, 2014

MIG To Demonstrate Advanced Aviation Technology At "KADEX-2014"


Indian Navy Inducts Ferry Craft At Kochi

A ferry craft named Neelam was inducted into the auxiliary fleet of Naval Ship Repair Yard (NSRY) Kochi today by Rear Admiral MS Pawar, Chief of Staff , Southern Naval Command. The craft capable of carrying 50 men was built by M/s Shalimar Works Kolkota. Speaking on the occasion, Rear Admiral Pawar said that the ferry vessel would bolster the operational support capabilities of Naval Ship Repair Yard by transportation of men and material to ships at anchorage and other berths. He asked the crew to be diligent in maintenance of the vessel. The 218 tonne vessel has a twin hull configuration and is capable for doing speeds up to 15 Knots. The induction ceremony was witnessed by senior officers of Southern Naval Command, employees of Naval Ship Repair Yard and representatives of the ship builder. Commodore TN Kaul, General Manager NSRY , Kochi presided over the function.

Thursday, May 15, 2014

Indian Air Force Chief Inaugurates Training Command Commanders’ Conference

A two days Annual Commanders’ Conference of Training Command, the alma mater of the IAF was inaugurated by Air Chief Marshal Arup Raha, Chief of the Air Staff, on 15 May 2014. Commanders of all the Flying, Technical and Non Technical Training Establishments of Air Force Stations under HQ Training Command are attending the conference. This is the CAS’ first visit to the Garden City after he took over on 01 Jan 2014. 

The CAS and Mrs Lily Raha, President AFWWA, were received by Air Marshal Paramjit Singh Gill, AOC-in-C, HQ TC and Mrs Pushpinder Gill, President AFWWA (Regional) at Bangalore. On arrival at Command HQ the CAS was given a Guard of Honour. 

In his inaugural address, the CAS acknowledged the hard work and professionalism of all air warriors of Training Command for their unflinching effort of conditioning every trainee to become fine Air Warriors. He emphasized the importance of inculcating moral values, qualities of Leadership, mental and physical prowess and an indomitable spirit to win against all odds. He also urged all Air Warriors to be fully involved in the process of IAF’s modernisation towards full spectrum strategic force and to keep abreast with the modern developments and technologies for smooth transition and better absorption of modern equipment. 

The Chief underlined the importance of staying physically fit and mentally agile so as to meet the challenges of one’s profession. He urged all air warrior to work towards the organisational goal with loyalty and dedication. 

The CAS awarded trophies to the units for their accomplishments and performance. 

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Lt Gen Dalbir Singh Will Be The Next Chief Of Army Staff

MoD Statement : 


New Delhi: Vaisakha 24, 1936

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Government have decided to appoint Lt General Dalbir Singh, PVSM, UYSM, AVSM, VSM, presently Vice Chief of the Army Staff as the next Chief of the Army Staff (COAS) after retirement of the present Chief of the Army  Staff, General Bikram Singh, PVSM, UYSM, AVSM, SM, VSM, ADC on July 31, 2014.

Lt General Dalbir Singh was commissioned in the Army on June 16, 1974. During a career spanning nearly 40 years, he has held various Command and Staff appointments. He has done National Defence College, Long Defence Management Course and Senior Command Courses.

Lt General Dalbir Singh is presently serving as Vice Chief of the Army Staff since January 01, 2014. Earlier he commanded Eastern Army Command.

The General officer is decorated with PVSM, UYSM, AVSM and VSM awards.

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Govt Clears LtGen Dalbir Singh Suhag, To Become Indian Army's Next Chief


Lieutenant  General  Dalbir  Singh,  PVSM,  UYSM,  AVSM,  VSM,  ADC is  an  alumnus  of  Sainik
School,  Chittorgarh.  He  joined  National  Defence Academy  (NDA)  in  1970  and  was  commissioned  into  4/5 GR  (FF)  in  Jun 1974.  He holds a Masters Degrees in Management Studies from Osmania University  and  Strategic  Studies  from  Chennai  University.  The  General Officer  has  attended  various career  courses  in  India  and  abroad  which include  ‘Long  Defence  Management  Course’  at  CDM, Secunderabad  in 1997-98, NDC Course at New Delhi in 2006, Executive Course in USA in 2005 and Senior  Mission  Leaders Course (UN) in Kenya in 2007. 

In  a  distinguished  military  career,  spanning  four  decades,  he  has tenanted  critical  Command  and Staff appointments  which  include  tactical and operational levels of command in active counter insurgency and proxy war  environment  in  the  North  East  and  Jammu  &  Kashmir.  The  General possesses  tremendous  operational  experience  which  includes  a  tenure as  a  Company  Commander  in  “Operation  Pawan”  in  Sri  Lanka,  raising and commanding a Rashtriya Rifles Battalion in Nagaland and  an Infantry Brigade deeply committed in intense Counter Insurgency Operations in the 

Kashmir Valley.  He  also  holds the  distinction  of  commanding  a Mountain Division  in  Jammu  & Kashmir,  deployed  on  the  Line  of  Control  in  High 

Prior  to  taking  over  the  appointment  of  ‘Vice  Chief  of  the  Army  Staff’ on  01  Jan  2014,  the
General  Officer  was  General  Officer  Commanding of  a  Corps,  looking  after  the  dual  responsibility 
of  Counter  Insurgency Operations  in  the  North  Eastern  States,  as  well  as  conventional operational tasks along the Indo-China Border and later as General Officer Commanding in Chief, Eastern Command with effect from 16 June 2012 to 

The  General  has  served  as  Instructor  in  Army  School  of  Mechanical Transport  (ASMT),  Bangalore
as  well  as  Indian  Military  Academy  (IMA), Dehradun.  He  has  also  tenanted  important  staff
appointments  at  the Divisional and the Corps levels.  He has also held important assignments in Army Headquarters, both as a Colonel and as a Brigadier

The General Officer has tenanted the appointment of IG SFF, Cabinet Secretariat  prior  to  his  promotion
as  a  Corps  Commander.  The  General has been holding the appointment of Colonel of the Regiment, 5 GR  (FF) from 19 Apr 2011 and the President Gorkha Brigade from 01 Jan 2014.

The  General  is  highly  decorated  and  is  the  proud  recepient  of  the Param  Vishisht  Seva  Medal, Uttam  Yudh  Seva  Medal,  Ati  Vishisht  Seva Medal and Vishisht Seva Medal.

The General is a keen sportsman and takes keen interest in Riding and Swimming.  He is married to Mrs Namita Suhag, who is a Political Science graduate from Delhi University.

DRDO Chief Inaugurates "RTRS Penta Rail Supersonic Track" At TBRL

Rail Track Rocket Sled (RTRS) Penta Rail Supersonic Track a national test facility was today inaugurated by Shri Avinash Chander, SA to RM, Secretary Department of Defence R&D and DG DRDO. “India is among a handful of countries in the world now possessing this unique test facility. This four kilometer long RTRS Penta track will be extremely useful for the testing of wide range of critical systems such as payload for manned missions of ISRO, the navigation system for missiles and aircrafts, proximity fuses for advanced warheads, fuses for armament systems parachutes for payload delivery, arrester systems for aircraft such as LCA”, stated Sh Avinash chander while inaugurated this National Test Facility, in presence of Dr SS Sundaram, DG(ECS), Dr Satish Kumar, Chief Controller (TM), Shri Ajay Singh, Chief Executive (CW&E), Sh M Balakrishnan and Sh V S Sethi , both former directors of TBRL and officers & staff of TBRL. Later, in his national technology Day address, he stated “I am glad that today we have added another key facility in TBRL. He also witnessed the demonstration of several newer advanced warheads”. Lauding the efforts of TBRL scientists in developing key technologies that are strategically important for the security of the nation, he said, that the observance of National Technology Day began with the technologies in which TBRL has played a key role. He also inaugurated the new building of Ballistics Vidyalaya, Ramgargh, a school run by DRDO Educational Society and the “Sampooran Singh Officers Transit Facility", within the premises of TBRL residential area at Ramgarh.

Describing the RTRS facility, Dr Manjit Singh Outstanding Scientist & Director TBRL said, “the facility consists of five rails, each having a length of 4 km, on which a test article can be propelled at supersonic speed with the help of specially designed rockets.  The track built for this purpose is precision aligned and capable of withstanding high level of loads.  The capability so acquired will accelerate the pace of development of defence and aerospace technologies and products”.

Saturday, May 10, 2014

Indian Naval Academy Passing Out Parade On May 31, 2014

The Passing Out - Parade Spring Term 2014 of the Indian Naval Academy is scheduled on 31 May 14 at Ezhimala, Kerala. This particular POP will witness the graduation ceremony of as many as four batches of cadets at INA, which include 65 cadets of the Flag-ship course of INA (86th ICC) B.Tech graduates, 63 Executive (General Service) naval cadets of the 17th Naval Orientation course, 31 cadets ex-NDA and naval cadets of other branches as well as Coast Guard cadets. 

The Indian Naval Academy (INA) is one of the finest military training establishment in the world. With world class facilities in terms of infrastructure, both for academic and outdoor facilities, including the state-of-the-art laboratories, workshops, swimming pool and playfields, the INA is mandated to develop cadets morally, mentally and physically into intelligent combat leaders of character for the Indian Navy and the Coast Guard. The Academy has modern residential facilities, an excellent mess and five well laid out squadrons. 

It is pertinent to mention that INA is first amongst the armed forces training establishments, who are awarding B.Tech degree to its officer cadets on completion of four year training. This transformational process started in 2009 when the Indian Navy adopted a policy to have only B.Tech qualified officers in the executive branch handling combat functions of the Indian Navy. Hitherto officers in the executive branch were BSc graduates. 

Friday, May 9, 2014

Boiler Room Accident Onboard Indian Naval Frigate INS Ganga, Three Injured

Indian Navy Statement : At about 1115 hrs on 09 May 14, a loud noise was heard in the Boiler Room of INS Ganga, while the ship was in drydock undergoing repairs / refit.  The cause of the loud noise is possibly due to gas accumulation. 

There has been no fire or any damage to any equipment in the ship.  Two sailors and two civilian dockyard workers were taken to hospital, only for precautionary checkup and have been immediately discharged.  The situation is normal.

Thursday, May 8, 2014

Indian Army Chief Visits Maldives

General Bikram Singh, Chief of the Army Staff, is proceeding on an official visit to Maldives from 08-10 May 14. The visit assumes special significance in the light of improving military cooperation between the two countries in consonance with our growing relationship with Maldives. 

Indian-Maldives relations have always been close and cordial. The successful visits of the Maldives Minister of Defence and National Security in Dec 13, President in Jan 14 and the Chief of Defence Force in Feb & Mar 14 and India’s Raksha Mantri in Sep 13 and External Affairs Minister in Feb 14 have also contributed significantly to the consolidation of the existing ties giving a further impetus to the cordial relations between both the nations. During the visit, the Chief is scheduled to interact with various high level political and military dignitaries of Maldives to include the President, Minister for Defence and National Security, Chief of Defence Force and other dignitaries. Issues of mutual interest and cooperation will be discussed during the visit. 

Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Indian Airforce Chief Visits Air Force Station Chandigarh

Air Chief Marshal Arup Raha PVSM AVSM VM ADC, Chief of the Air Staff, Indian Air Force arrived at Chandigarh on a day’s visit to 12 Wing and 3 Base Repair Depot, Air Force. On his arrival he was received by Air Cmde AK Barik VSM, AOC 3 BRD. An impressive Guard of Honour was presented to the Chief by the personnel of 3 BRD, AF. During his visit the CAS was briefed on the operations and various other activities carried out by this base. 

12 wing, AF is a premier operational transport base and a lifeline to the northern Himalayan region. They operate in an environment with the most hostile terrain and weather conditions supporting all operations in the Northern Himalayan region. 3 BRD, AF carry out repair, overhaul and maintenance of MI-8, Mi -17, Mi 17 1V and MI-17 V5 helicopters. Presently it is involved in the induction of the state of the art Mi 17 V 5 helicopters. 

During his visit the CAS addressed all the personnel and urged them to keep abreast with the modern developments and technologies for smooth and better absorption of modern equipment. The Chief underlined the importance of IAFs vision statement “People First Mission Always” and stressed on the need for self reliance and urged upon every air warrior to work with full loyalty and integrity towards achieving the organizational goals and personal aspirations in times to come. 

Army Chief Visits Eastern Army Command

The Chief of the Army Staff (COAS), General Bikram Singh visited Headquarters Eastern Command on 07 May 2014.

Lt General MMS Rai, Army Commander, Eastern Command briefed the COAS on the operational preparedness, security situation and the progress of infrastructure development in the Eastern Theatre. The COAS reiterated that Eastern Theatre will be given due importance including requisite thrust on development of infrastructure to support troops deployed in the challenging and hostile terrain of the region. He also took stock of the new raisings, including 17 Corps, which commenced raising on 01 January 2014. The COAS was also briefed on the internal security situation in the North Eastern States.

The Chief, thereafter, addressed the officers in the station, emphasising the need to uphold the core values of the Army and urged them to strengthen the work culture hinging on professional ethos. He also emphasised on the importance of taking care of the requirements and needs of the ex-servicemen and ‘Veer Naris’.

The COAS complimented all ranks of Eastern Command for their continued efforts in fulfilling their operational roles and tasks.

Naval Chief Visits Southern Naval Command

Sound training is the foundation of exceptional operational tempo said Admiral RK Dhowan, Chief of the Naval Staff here today.  The Admiral, on his first official visit to Southern Naval Command after assuming office, was addressing Navy personnel at a ceremonial parade. Referring to the recent accidents, the Admiral exhorted all hands to pull together to reinforce professional pride in the white uniform, and take Navy to greater heights.  Terming this century as the century of the sea, the Admiral emphasized the importance of the Indian Ocean and the preeminent role, of Navy as the engine of nations’ economy. He also informed the personnel on parade that INS Vikramaditya is operationally deployed with Mig 29 Ks integrated with the carrier. Other addition to Navy’s capabilities includes commissioning of new advanced platforms and air assets as well as accretion of satellites into network centric operations.

Earlier, Admiral RK Dhowan was received by Vice Admiral Satish Soni, Flag Officer Commanding in Chief, Southern Naval Command,  on his arrival on Parade. The other engagements of the Navy Chief today include addressing Officers and Sailors of Southern Naval Command and an interaction with the civilian employees. He would also visit the newly commissioned Joint Operations Centre, ships of Southern Naval Command as well as INS Dronacharya before departing for New Delhi tomorrow.