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Lt General BS Raju to be new Vice Chief of Indian Army from May 1

The move is rare as there are only a few instances in the past when an officer with the experience of commanding a Corps was promoted and elevated as an Army Commander

Published: 29th April 2022 06:45 PM  |   Last Updated: 29th April 2022 09:01 PM   |  A+A-

Lt General Baggavalli Somashekar Raju

Lt General BS Raju (Photo| ANI)

Express News Service

NEW DELHI: The government on Friday confirmed that Lieutenant General BS Raju would be the next Vice Chief of the Indian Army. The move is rare as there are only a few instances in the past when an officer with the experience of commanding a Corps was promoted and elevated as an Army Commander.

The Army in its statement said, “Lieutenant General Baggavalli Somashekar Raju will take over as the Vice Chief of the Army Staff (VCoAS) on 01 May 2022.”

It is a rare distinction for Lt Gen Raju to have been brought as the VCoAS with a command experience of a Corps. In the normal course of things, once an officer completes his Army Commander tenure, he is brought in to the Army Headquarters as the VCoAS. The one recent past precedent is when Lt Gen SF Rodrigues was the VCoAS from November 1987 to April 1989, after the command of a Corps.

The VCoAS and the seven Army Commanders are of the same rank. There can be two or more Corps under an Army Commander and the Army has seven Commands. The VCoAs is the second most senior position in the Army Headquarters.

Lt Gen Raju’s interest in the forces took him to Sainik School. He is an alumnus of Sainik School Bijapur from where he qualified for National Defence Academy and was commissioned in the Jat Regiment on 15th December 1984.

He commanded his Battalion during Operation Parakram in the Western Theatre against Pakistan and in Jammu & Kashmir. He as a Brigadier commanded the Uri brigade along the Line of Control (LoC), a Counter Insurgency Force and the Chinar Corps in the Kashmir Valley. The General Officer also served as the Commandant, Indian Military Training Team in Bhutan.

During his illustrious career spanning 38 years, he has held many important regimental, staff and instructional positions in the Army Headquarters and in field formations. Prior to taking over as the VCoAS, the General Officer was the Director General Military Operations during the standoff on the LAC.                                                                           

The General Officer is a qualified helicopter pilot having carried out operational flying in Somalia as part of the United Nations Operation in Somalia (UNOSOM-II). He is also the Colonel Commandant of the Jat Regiment.

Lt Gen Raju has attended all important career courses in India and has had the privilege of doing his NDC at Royal College of Defence Studies, United Kingdom. He also holds a distinguished Master's programme degree in Counter Terrorism at the Naval Postgraduate School, Monterey, United States.



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