Just a day before he officially retires, after completing tenure of three years as the Indian Army Chief, Gen Bipin Rawat takes over as country's first-ever Chief of Defence Staff (CDS). He has the rare distinction of serving full three-year terms as the Army Chief.
Over the weekend a notification was released related to the amendments made to the army, air force and navy rules and a new clause was introduced allowing the CDS to serve up to a maximum age of 65 years.
Rawat was the front runner for the post from the time it was announced earlier this year by Prime Minister Narendra Modi from the ramparts of the Red Fort on August 15. As per the existing rules, an Army Chief has a tenure of three years or up to the retirement age of 62 years, whichever is earlier. In the case of Rawat, he has yet to reach the age of 62 years but he is retiring as he has completed a tenure f three years as an Army chief.
As a CDS he will function as a single-point advisor to the government on matters related to the military and will also be focusing on the synergy between the services: Army, Indian Air Force and the Navy.
Gen Bipin Rawat who is from a Gorkha regiment is an alumnus of the St Edward School, Shimla, the National Defence Academy, Khadakwasla, and the Indian Military Academy, Dehradun. Besides commanding an infantry division in the Kashmir Valley and a corps in the Northeast, Gen Rawat has also commanded an infantry battalion along the Line of Actual Control in the Eastern Sector.
He will head the newly created agencies for cyber and space, tri-service agency of Special Forces is expected to come under him and also headquarters of the Integrated Defence Staff, comprising representatives from the three services.
According to the Ministry of Defence Chief of the Integrated Defence Staff, also known as the CISC, who heads this tri-services organisation will be under the CDS and is expected to be renamed as the Deputy CDS.
More about Gen Rawat, country's first CDS
He is an alumnus of St Edward School, Shimla, and the National Defence Academy, Khadakwasla.
And a graduate of the Defence Services Staff College, Wellington, the Higher Command and National Defence College courses.
He has attended the Command and General Staff Course at Fort Leavenworth, US.
In December 1978 he was commissioned to the Fifth Battalion, the Eleventh Gorkha Rifles of the Indian Army from IMA, Dehradun.
He was also awarded the ‘Sword of Honour’.
An Infantry Battalion, along the Line of Actual Control in the Eastern Sector has been commanded by him.
Also Multinational Brigade, under Chapter VII mission in the Democratic Republic of Congo (MONUC).
He has commanded a Theatre of Ops along the Western Front.
Also, he had an Instructional tenure at IMA Dehradun.
He has held the position of General Staff Officer, at the Military Operations Directorate.
Among other positions held: Colonel Military Secretary and Deputy Military Secretary in the Military Secretary's Branch; Senior Instructor, Junior Command Wing and Logistics staff officer of a Division in Central India.
He has been Major General Staff of the Eastern Theatre, and the Vice Chief of the Army Staff.
Rawat has also been awarded M Phil in Defence Studies from Madras University, and holds two Diplomas, in Management and Computer Studies respectively.
Several gallantry awards.
Twice he has received COAS Commendation and the Army Commander's Commendation.
For his service with the United Nations, twice he was awarded the Force Commander's Commendation.