Lt. Gen Manoj Pande likely to become India’s next Army Chief; Full list of Chief of Army Staff



Chief of Army Staff: Lieutenant General Manoj Pande is all set to become the Chief of the Indian Army Staff as incumbent Army Chief General MM Naravane is due to retire by the end of April 2022. MM Naravane is also seen as the frontrunner for the post of Chief of Defence Staff (CDS) which became vacant because of the untimely demise of Gen. Bipin Rawat in a helicopter crash in December 2021.

Lt. Gen Manoj Pande will take over the reins as he is the senior-most in the force after General MM Naravane who has been serving as the Chief of Army Staff (COAS) since December 31, 2019. Earlier in January 2022, Pande was appointed as the Vice Chief of Army Staff. 

Who is Lt. Gen Manoj Pande; India’s next Army Chief

Lt. Gen Manoj Pande was commissioned into the Corps of Engineers in December 1982. He is a graduate of Staff College, Camberley (UK), and also had also attended the Higher Command Course at Army War College, Mhow, and the National Defence College at Delhi.

In his 37 years of service, Lt. General Manoj Pande has taken an active part in Operation Vijay and Operation Parakram.

Lt. Gen Manoj Pande becomes senior-most in the Indian Army

Lt. Gen Manoj Pande who is all set to become the Chief of the Indian Army has become the senior-most after a few top officers retired in the last three months. The incumbent Lieutenant General Raj Shukla who was commanding the Indian Army’s training command (ARTRAC) retired on March 31, 2022.

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A few other senior-most leaders of the Indian Army had also retired by January end. Lt. Gen. Y.K. Joshi and Lt. General C.P. Mohanty had retired on January 31, 2022.

What is the role of Chief of Indian Army Staff?

The Chief of the Indian Army Staff who is unofficially known as the Army Chief is the head of the Indian Army Headquarters and is the highest-ranking officer of the Indian Army.

The Chief of Army Staff is also the principal advisor to the Defence Ministry on matters pertaining exclusively to the Indian Army. COAS is also the significant military advisor to the President of India, the Supreme Commander.

Chief of Army Staff List

S.No.

Name of COAS

Serving Period

1

General Sir Robert Lockhart

15 Aug 1947 – 31 Dec 1947

2

General Sir Roy Bucher

01 Jan 1948 – 14 Jan 1949

3

Field Marshal KM Cariappa

15 Jan 1949 – 14 Jan 1953

4

General KS Rajendra Sinhji 

15 Jan 1953 – 14 May 1955

5

General S.M. Srinagesh

15 May 1955 – 7 May 1957

6

General K.S. Thimayya

8 May 1957 – 7 May 1961

7

General P.N. Thapar

8 May 1961 – 19 November 1962

8

General J.N. Choudhuri

20 November 1962 – 7 June 1966

9

General P.P. Kumaramangalam

8 June 1966 – 7 June 1969

10

General S.H.F.J. Manekshaw

8 June 1969 – 14 January 1973

11

General G.G. Bewoor

15 January 1973 – 31 May 1975

12

General T.N. Raina

1 June 1975 – 31 May 1978

13

General O.P. Malhotra

1 June 1978 – 31 May 1981

14

General K.V. Krishna Rao

1 June 1981 – 31 July 1983

15

General A.S. Vaidya

1 August 1983 – 31 January 1986

16

General K. Sunderji

1 February 1986 – 30 April 1988

17

General V.N. Sharma

1 May 1988 – 30 June 1990

18

General S.F. Rodrigues

1 July 1990 – 30 June 1993

19

General B.C. Joshi

1 July 1993 – 18 November 1994

20

General S. Roychowdhury

22 November 1994 – 30 September 1997

21

General V.P.Malik

1 October 1997 – 30 September 2000

22

General S. Padmanabhan

1 October 2000 – 31 December 2002

23

General N.C.Vij

1 January 2003 – 31 January 2005

24

General J.J. Singh

01 February 2005 – 30 September 2007

25

General Deepak Kapoor

30 September 2007 – 30 March 2010

26

General V.K. Singh

31 March 2010 – 31 May 2012

27

General Bikram Singh

01 June 2012 – 31 July 2014

28.

General Dalbir Singh Suhag

31 July 2014 – 31 December 2016

29.

General Bipin Rawat 

31 December 2016 – 31 December 2019

30. 

General Manoj Mukund Naravane

31 December 2019 – incumbent

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Lt Gen Manoj Pande appointed as next Vice Chief of Army Staff



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