New Delhi, Dec 18: The government on Saturday night appointed Lieutenant General Bipin Rawat as the next Army chief superseding two Lt-Generals. Rawat will replace General Dalbir Singh Suhag on December 31. Rawat took over as the Army vice-chief in September 2016. He bypassed Eastern Command chief Lt Gen Praveen Bakshi and Southern Army Command chief Lt Gen P M Hariz. Bakshi, the Commander-in-Chief of the Eastern Command, was widely expected to take over as the next chief. “The next Army Chief will be LT General Bipin Rawat with effect from the afternoon of December 31,” Defence Ministry Spokesperson confirmed. Rawat was commissioned in the Fifth Battalion of the Eleven Gorkha Rifles in December 1978 and is currently the Vice Chief of the Army.

As per Defence sources, Rawat has tremendous hands on experience of serving in combat areas at various functional levels over last 3 decades and has been named as the best suited among the Lt. Generals, to deal with emerging challenges.

Here’ s all you need to know about the new Army Chief:

  1. Lieutenant General Bipin Rawat was born in Pauri Garhwal, Uttrakhand. He joined the Indian Army in December 1978 and was commissioned into the 5/11 Gorkha Rifles.
  2. Born in a Rawat Rajput family serving army since generations, Rawat’s father Lt. Gen. L S Rawat also served the Indian Army.
  3. Rawat was commissioned in Eleven Gorkha Rifles in December 1978, from Indian Military Academy, Dehradun and had won the Sword of Honour.
  4. Rawat survived a chopper accident when he was the commander of the Dimapur-based Headquarters 3 Corps.
  5. Lieutenant General Bipin Rawat also commanded a brigade in counter-insurgency area and another one in United Nations peacekeeping mission in Congo.
  6. Rawat commanded the Pune-based Southern Command before he was appointed the army vice-chief.
  7. For his truly exceptional performance within MONUC, Rawat was awarded the Force Commanders Commendation.
  8. Rawat was tasked to present the Revised Charter of Peace Enforcement to the Special Representatives of the Secretary General and Force Commanders of all the UN missions in a special conference at Wilton Park, London on 16 May 2009.