Highlights:
• Air Chief Marshal R.K.S. Bhadauria, the current CAS, will retire from his post on September 30
• Air Marshall Chaudhari succeeded Air Marshal HS Arora and became the vice chief of the Air Staff on July 1
• Chaudhari has also served as the Air Officer Commanding-in-Chief of Western Air Command from August 1, 2020
• The Air Marshal has won the Param Vishisht Seva Medal, Ati Vishisht Seva Medal, and Vayu Sena Medal

On Tuesday, the Centre appointed Air Marshal Vivek Ram Chaudhari, the 45th Vice Chief of the Air Staff, as the next Chief of the Air Staff (CAS). Air Chief Marshal R.K.S. Bhadauria, the current CAS, will retire from his post on September 30.

New service chiefs are usually appointed 2-3 months earlier in order to give them enough time to adapt to their new role. A statement was issued by the defence ministry which stated that the government has decided to appoint Vice Chief of the Air Staff, Air Marshal V R Chaudhari, as the next Chief of the Air Staff.

Marshall Vivek Ram Chaudhari was commissioned on 29 December 1982, in the fighter stream of the Air Force. Chaudhari has over 3800 hours of flying experience on several fighters and trainer aircraft, which includes the missions flown in Operation Meghdoot and Operation Safed Sagar. He is also a graduate of the Defence Services Staff College, located in Wellington, and the National Defence Academy.

Air Marshall Chaudhari succeeded Air Marshal HS Arora and became the vice chief of the Air Staff on July 1. He has also served as the Air Officer Commanding-in-Chief of Western Air Command from August 1, 2020. The Air Marshal has held several commands, staff, and instructional appointments at various levels and has also won the Param Vishisht Seva Medal, Ati Vishisht Seva Medal, and Vayu Sena Medal.

The appointment of Air Marshal Vivek Ram Chaudhari as the next Chief of the Air Staff (CAS) marks the beginning of the change of current service chiefs because Navy Chief Admiral Karambir Singh will retire by the end of November and Army Chief Manoj Naravane will retire in April 2022.

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