Outgoing Army Chief General Bipin Rawat Named India’s First CDS

Indian Army

Bipin Rawat

New Delhi: Outgoing Army Chief General Bipin Rawat has been named the country’s first Chief of Defence Staff (CDS). He will be a four star General with assuming the power of the CDS.

He will be the Principal Military Advisor to the Defence Minister, and head the new Department of Military Affairs to ensure jointness in training, logistics and procurement of the three Services.

The Defence Ministry had recently amended the Army, Air Force and Navy rules by bringing in a new clause that allows the Chief of Defence Staff to serve up to a maximum age of 65 years.

The notification came in the backdrop of Gen Rawat retiring on December 31. According to the existing rules, an Army Chief has a tenure of three years or up to the retirement age of 62 years, whichever is earlier. Although Rawat is yet to reach the age of 62 years, he is retiring because he is completing his tenure of three years as Army Chief.

The announcement of General Rawat as the CDS comes just a day before he was to retire from Service after completing a full three-year term as the Chief of Army Staff.

It may be noted here that the announcement to create a new post of CDS was made by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on August 15 in his Independence Day address to the nation from the ramparts of the Red Fort.

Soon after the announcement, a committee chaired by National Security Adviser (NSA) Ajit Doval was set up to draw the various parameters for the CDS.

An alumnus of the St. Edward School, Shimla, the National Defence Academy, Khadakwasla, and the Indian Military Academy, Dehradun, General Rawat is from the Gorkha regiment. According to his profile on the Indian Army’s website, General Rawat has commanded an infantry battalion along the Line of Actual Control in the Eastern Sector, an infantry division in the Kashmir Valley and a corps in the Northeast.

General Rawat was appointed the Chief of Army Staff on December 31, 2016.