After nine months of the unfortunate death of General Bipin Rawat, the Union government has appoimted Lt. General Anil Chauhan (Retd.) as the next Chief of Defence Staff (CDS).
The Defence Ministry in its statement said, “The Government has decided to appoint Lt General Anil Chauhan (Retired) as the next Chief of Defence Staff (CDS) who shall also function as Secretary to Government of India, Department of Military Affairs with effect from the date of his assumption of charge and until further orders.”
But who is Lt. Gen. Anil Chauhan? What are the major responsibilities he took over during his tenure? Let us have a quick look at his journey.
Career of Lt Gen Anil Chauhan
As an alumnus of National Defence Academy (NDA), Khadakwasla and Indian Millitary Academy, Dehradun, Chauhan was commissioned into Gorkha Rifles in 1981. Belonging to a Rajput family in Gharwal, he also served as the Eastern Army commander. He spent major part of his tenure in the Eastern region. Eastern Army is considered as an equivalent to Northern Army in terms of its strategic influence.
During his tenure as Major General (2014-2016), he commanded over the infantry division at the critical Baramulla Sector in Northern Command. He became Commander-in-Chief of Eastern Command in 2019 and stayed at the position until his retirement in May, 2021.
It was only in his tenure that the insurgency situation in the north-east was improved leading to the reduced military foot print in the area. During the India-China border crisis, his stewardship was as viewed as notable.
Significant operations by Lt Gen Anil Chauhan
As Director General Military Operations (DGMO), Chauhan led the Operation Sunrise where both Indian and Myanmar army took joint efforts to diminish insurgency in the border area in 2019. The two phased operation was divided in February and May. The targeted groups of the operation were NSCN(K), ULFA, NDFB and PLA, as well as anti-Myanmar entities including in Arakan and other insurgents in China-Mizoram borders.
He was also reportedly a part of the strategic planning of Balakot surgical strike and took the responsibilities of managing security at the border during the post-strike escalation of tensions.
Awards and Recognitions
The colourful career of Lt General Chauhan was rightly recognized by the Central Government in different times. For his relentless service to the country, he was awarded with Param Vishisht Seva Medal, Uttam Yudh Seva Medal, Ati Vishisht Seva Medal, Sena Medal, and Vishisht Seva Medal.
Chauhan is going to be the second CDS of India since the Modi Government approved the post in 2019.