General Manoj Mukund Naravane today took charge as the Chief of Army Staff, succeeding General Bipin Rawat. After receiving a farewell Guard of Honour this morning, General Bipin Rawat had said: "I am confident he (General Naravane) will take Army to greater heights".
In visuals, General Rawat was seen handing over the baton of the Chairman of Chiefs of Staff Committee to his successor.
General Naravane assumes the new role months after he was appointed as Vice Chief of the Army in September. He was earlier heading the Eastern Command of the Army which takes care of India's nearly 4,000-km border with China.
General Naravane is an alumnus of the National Defence Academy and the Indian Military Academy. He was commissioned into the 7th battalion, the Sikh Light Infantry Regiment in June 1980.
In his 37 years of service, he has served in numerous command and staff appointments in peace, field and highly active counter-insurgency environments in Jammu and Kashmir and the Northeast. He has also commanded a Rashtriya Rifles battalion in Jammu and Kashmir and an infantry brigade on the eastern front.
A decorated officer, General Naravane has been awarded the "Sena Medal" (Distinguished) for effectively commanding his battalion in Jammu and Kashmir. He is also a recipient of the "Vishisht Seva Medal" for his services as the Inspector General Assam Rifles (North) in Nagaland and the "Ati Vishisht Seva Medal" for commanding of a prestigious strike corps.
General Bipin Rawat is set to take over as India's first Chief of Defence Staff (CDS) after the handover in a move announced by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Independence Day.
"The position Chief of Army Staff has many responsibilities. Till now, I was concentrating on my obligations as Chief of Army Staff. Now that I will have a new designation, I will sit and plan a strategy for future. I will fulfill my role as Chief of Army Staff till the handover," he told reporters this morning after paying tribute at the National War Memorial in Delhi.
(With inputs from PTI)