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New Heads at Andaman and Nicobar Command, Eastern Army Command

by Raju Vernekar
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Vice Admiral Ravneet Singh assumes office as Deputy Chief of Naval Staff, Assam Rifles gets new Chief
By Raju Vernekar
Mumbai, June 2: 


Among a series of top-level appointments in the armed forces on Tuesday were the new Commander-in-Chief of the Andaman and Nicobar Command (ANC), Eastern Army Commander, Deputy Chief of the Naval Staff, and the Director-General of Assam Rifles.
Lt. Gen Ajai Singh assumed charge as the 16 the Commander-in-Chief of the Andaman and Nicobar Command (ANC), the only tri-service command of the armed forces based at Port Blair. His predecessor, Lt. Gen Manoj Pande, who relinquished the charge on May 31, took over as the General Officer Commanding-in-Chief of the Eastern Command based at Kolkata. He was commissioned in the Bombay Sappers in December 1982. 
“A fifth-generation Army, as well as cavalry, armoured corps officer, with family service of 0ver 162 years since September 13, 1858, Lt Gen Ajai Singh, is an alumnus of the Lawrence School, Sanawar (Himachal Pradesh) and National Defence Academy (NDA) and Indian Military Academy(IMA), a Defence Ministry statement said. He was commissioned in December 1983 into 81 Armoured Regiment, raised by his later father, it stated. Lt Gen Singh has had the privilege of tenanting various appointments across all six of the Army’s geographical Commands as well as at the Army training command. Besides Lt Gen Pradeep Chandran Nair AVSM, YSM took over as the 21 st Director General of the Assam Rifles, the paramilitary force popularly known as Sentinels of the North East.
Naval appointments
In the major reshuffle of top officers, Vice Admiral Ravneet Singh assumed charge as Deputy Chief of Naval Staff (DCNS) from outgoing DCNS Vice Admiral MS Pawar, who superannuated on May 31. Besides Vice Admiral Sandeep Naithani, assumed charge as the Chief of Material, from Vice Admiral SR Sarma, who retired on May 31. Similarly, Vice Admiral Dinesh K Tripathi assumed charge as Chief of Personnel in place of Vice Admiral Ravneet Singh.
Vice Admiral Ravneet Singh
Vice Admiral Ravneet Singh was commissioned into the Indian Navy on Jul 01, 1983, and specialized in Aviation. The Flag Officer is a Qualified Flying Instructor with a Master Green instrument rating. He has flown HT-2, Kiran HJT 16, TS 11 Iskra, Hunter, Harrier Gr 3, Jet Provost, Chetak, Gazelle, Hawk, and Mig 29 KUB aircraft during his illustrious career.
The Admiral has held various challenging Staff, Command, and Diplomatic assignments during his distinguished naval career and has had wide-ranging experience onboard diverse platforms. He has commanded various frontline ships and Naval Air Squadrons including INS Himgiri, INS Ranvijay, INS Ranvir, INAS 551B, INAS 300 as well as the premier Air Base INS Hansa. Additionally, he was also appointed Indian Defence Advisor (Kenya, Tanzania, and Seychelles) from 2005 to 2008. He was awarded Commendation by the Chief of the Naval Staff in 2000 and has been decorated with the Nausena Medal (Gallantry) in 2004 and Ati Vishisht Seva Medal in 2017.
A message from Vice Admiral (Retd) M S Pawar, PVSM, AVSM, VSM
As I transit to life after 51 years in uniform, including 11 years at Sainik School Korukonda and the National Defence Academy, I do so with the utmost satisfaction – of having kept a taut watch on deck in weather fair and foul; of keeping the ‘Service before Self’ whilst emulating the Chetwode Motto that is etched on the Sudan Block of NDA; of stepping onboard the deck of almost every ship in the Indian Navy and being at sea for long periods that were made to seem shorter by the rapid pace of activities, whilst also earning the distinction of having the longest service in seagoing billets by any officer to date; of operating in the air and underwater onboard diverse platforms including launching and tail hooking on a carrier, of excelling with awards in every course I undertook in India or abroad; of having commanded the finest set of professionals in the Mauritius National Coast Guard, of being at sea during OP Pawan, the Kargil War, 26/11, the largest Indian Navy Deployment to the Atlantic. It is with a sense of great pride and fulfilment that I pass on my baton to a set of able hands, and with the Navy – that is my mother, success, and glory, no matter what the weather.
Vice Admiral Sandeep Naithani
Vice Admiral Sandeep Naithani, AVSM, VSM, is a graduate of the National Defence Academy, Khadakwasla, Pune. He was commissioned into the Electrical Branch of the Indian Navy on 01 Jan 1985. The Admiral is a Post Graduate in Radar and Communication Engineering from IIT Delhi and a distinguished alumnus of the Defence Services Staff College (DSSC) and the National Defence College (NDC).
He has held various challenging appointments during his illustrious naval career spanning over three and a half decades. The officer has served onboard the Aircraft Carrier Viraat in various capacities. He has tenanted important appointments in Naval Dockyards at Mumbai and Visakhapatnam and in the Staff, Personnel, and Materiel Branches of Naval Headquarters. The Admiral has also commanded the premier electrical training establishment of the Navy, INS Valsura. Headquarters. He has been awarded the Ati Vishisht Seva Medal and Vishisht Seva Model.
Vice Admiral Dinesh K Tripathi
Vice Admiral Dinesh K Tripathi, AVSM, Nausena Medal, is an alumnus of National Defence Academy Khadakwasla and was commissioned in the Navy on 01 Jul 1985. The Flag Officer is a specialist in Communication and Electronic Warfare and has served on frontline warships of the Navy as Signal Communication Officer and Electronic Warfare Officer and later as the Executive Officer and Principal Warfare Officer of Guided Destroyer INS Mumbai.
A graduate of Defence Services Staff College, Wellington, where he was awarded the Thimmaiya Medal, Vice Admiral Dinesh K Tripathi has attended Naval Higher Command Course and Naval Command College at the US Naval War College, Newport, Rhode Island in 2007-08, where he won the prestigious Robert Bateman International Prize. 

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