NEW DELHI: Air Marshal Rakesh Kumar Singh Bhadauria will take charge as the 26th air chief after the superannuation of Air Chief Marshal BS Dhanoa on September 30.
Air Marshal Bhadauria, the Vice-Chief of the Air Staff, was supposed to retire the same day with Dhanoa.
In the past, Air Marshal NC Suri became the IAF chief the same day Air Chief SK Mehra was scheduled to retire, on July 31, 1991.
As per the rule the service chiefs serve till 62 years of age and the ones lower in rank retire at 60 years of age
An alumnus of the National Defence Academy, Bhadauria was commissioned into the fighter stream of the IAF in June 1980 and won the coveted ‘Sword of Honour’ for standing first in the overall order of merit.
Bhadauria played an important role in negotiations on Rafale Fighters.
In recognition of his role, one of the Rafale trainers RB 008 have been named after him.
He has held various Command, Staff and Instructional appointments at various levels. During his nearly four decades career, Bhadauria commanded a Jaguar squadron and a premier Air Force Station.
He devised a method for carrying bombing from the Jaguar aircraft using the GPS.
This was especially relevant for the bombing role of Jaguars in Operation Safed Sagar in 1999.