Lieutenant General Anil Chauhan: New CDS of India
Since 30 September 2022, General Anil Chauhan PVSM UYSM AVSM SM VSM, a four-star general of the Indian Army, has served as the country’s second Chief of Defence Staff (CDS). He was born on 18 May 1961.
Following a June 2022 notice that allowed military retirees under the age of 62 to be qualified for the position, Chauhan was recalled from retirement and named Chief of Defence Staff (CDS) by the Narendra Modi-led government on September 28, 2022. He became the first three-star retiree to be assigned to the position, which is typically held by a four-star officer, and took over command two days after being appointed. General Bipin Rawat, the position’s first occupant, having passed away nine months prior in a helicopter crash in December 2021. He was followed by General Rawat.
New Chief of Defence Staff of India: Lieutenant General Anil Chauhan
- Any three-star officer under the age of 62 who is a lieutenant general, vice admiral, or air marshal, whether they are active duty or retired, will be considered a qualified candidate for appointment as CDS, according to a gazette notification released by the Ministry of Defence (MoD) in June 2022.
- Gen Anil Chauhan, who had previously resigned as a lieutenant general at the age of 60, became one of the leading frontrunners in the field of qualifying applicants as a result of the announcement.
- Gen. Anil Chauhan was one of 14 army candidates, including both active-duty and retired commanders, who were qualified for the position at the time the notification was made public.
The MoD officially announced the appointment of Gen Chauhan as the new CDS on September 28, 2022, bringing an end to the nine-month search for the position.
CDS of India: About Chief of Defence Staff of India
The Chiefs of Staff Committee (COSC) of the Indian Armed Forces is led by the Chief of Defence Staff (CDS), who serves as its permanent chairman. The Chief of Defence Staff serves as the Minister of Defence’s top military advisor and is the highest-ranking uniformed officer on active service in the Indian military. The Department of Military Affairs is overseen by the Chief as well. A vice-chief named the Chief of Integrated Defence Staff assists the CDS.
First CDS of India: General Bipin Rawat
On January 1st, 2020, General Bipin Rawat became the first Chief of Defence Staff. The job was created with the intention of enhancing tri-service effectiveness, coordination, and overall integration of the Indian armed forces’ combat capabilities. There was no equivalent position at the time the role was created.
Chief of Defence Staff: History of CDS of India Post
As a forerunner to the position of CDS, the Chairman of the Chief of Staff Committee (Chairman-CoSC) was established in 1947 with the duty of advising the Defence Minister on all military matters. The Chairman CoSC position would be given to the senior service leader among the three.
- Following wars with Pakistan and China, the need for a Chief of Defence Staff was acknowledged as early as the 1960s.
- The possibility of creating such a post increased over time.
- However, the Group of Ministers (GoM) did not formally propose the creation of the post of CDS until 2001, in response to the Kargil Review Committee’s 1999 recommendation.
- A CDS was also advocated by other committees, such as the Naresh Chandra Task Force in 2012 and the Lieutenant General D. B. Shekatkar Committee in 2016.
- All stakeholders involved were consulted beginning in 2006.
- The ultimate decision about the creation of a job for the CDS was begun by the Cabinet Committee on Security in 2017.
- Over the years, there was opposition to the issue on a number of fronts.
- Air Chief Marshal Pratap Chandra Lal, the Chief of the Air Staff, had vowed to resign if the position of CDS was formed following the war of 1971.
The government was on the verge of appointing Admiral Sushil Kumar, the then-Chief of the Naval Staff, as the CDS in 2001. A date had been set, along with further procedures. But the plan was abandoned, among other things, because of territorial battles.
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CDS of India: Creation of the Post of Chief of Defence Staff
- During his Independence Day speech at the Red Fort in New Delhi on August 15, 2019, Prime Minister Narendra Modi declared the official decision to create the position.
- Following the announcement, a group headed by the National Security Advisor was formed on August 23, 2019, and it included the Cabinet Secretary, the Secretary of Defense, and the Chairman of the Chief of Staff Committee (C-COSC) among others.
- Its purpose was to finalise the CDS’s authority. Within six weeks, the committee was required to turn in its report.
- The committee’s work was substantially done by November 2019.
- The Chief of Defence Staff position was formally formed on December 24 by the Cabinet Committee on Security (CCS).
General Bipin Rawat assumed the position of Chief of Defence Staff on January 1, 2020. General Manoj Mukund Naravane was named the interim chairman of the Chiefs of Staff Committee on December 15, 2021, in the wake of the passing of General Rawat. Since there was no established succession plan for the CDS, this choice was selected.
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New Criteria for CDS of India
The government changed the Army, Navy, and Air Force service rules to make retired Service Chiefs and three-star officers eligible for candidature for the nation’s top military position, paving the way for the appointment of the Chief of Defence Staff (CDS).
Retired Service chiefs are largely excluded, especially for the current consideration, due to the age restriction that the retired officer should not have reached 62 years of age on the date of appointment.
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CDS of India: Functions of Chief of Defence Staff
In addition to other duties, the CDS would implement integration and jointness of the three services, assign inter-services prioritisation to capital acquisition proposals, command the tri-service agencies, lead the Department of Military Affairs, and participate in overall defence planning at the time the position was created in December 2019.
- An Air Defence Command was one of the first reforms that the first CDS suggested.
- The CDS emphasised the need to avoid expensive defence imports, give domestic industry a chance even with only 70% of the general staff qualitative standards, and avoid “misrepresenting operational requirements” in the wake of the COVID-19 epidemic.
- The development of Integrated Theatre Commands—joint military and theatre commands—and the timeline for the theaterization process were both announced by the CDS in February 2020.
- Army, Navy, and Air Force troops will cooperate with one another under each command.
- The CDS published opinions on a potential rocket or missile force in September 2021.
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CDS of India: Uniform and Insignia of Chief of Defence Staff
The tri-service Indian Armed Forces emblem, which consists of the Naval anchor, crossed Army swords, and Air Force eagle, all topped by the national emblem of India, is worn in place of service insignia and unit emblems while the Chief of Defence Staff wears the appropriately coloured uniform of their parent service.
The wreathed tri-service emblem can also be used in place of shoulder flashes, shoulder rank badges for four-star officers, uniform button and belt badge service insignia, and shoulder rank badges for service chiefs. The tri-service emblem is used in place of the rank stars on the automobile pennant, which represents the officer’s parent service.
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