Next army chief is also likely from Eastern Command

Next army chief is also likely from Eastern Command

For the fourth consecutive time, the chief of 1.3-million strong Indian Army would come from the headquarters of Eastern Command in Kolkata where Lt Gen Praveen Bakshi just took over as the commander-in-chief.

Bakshi is in line to become the next Chief of Army Staff once the incumbent, Gen Dalbir Singh Suhag, retires in December, 2016.

He would be the fourth successive army chief coming straight from Fort William, the headquarters of the Eastern Command, which oversees the strategically vital China border in the Northeast.

The last three army chiefs–Gen V K Singh (rtd); Gen Bikram Singh (rtd) and Gen Suhag – became the army chief after spending a stint at the Fort William as the Eastern Army Commander.

Raising the mountain strike corps (17 Corps) with firepower to attack the enemy in the mountain and developing the border infrastructure for logistics support would be the priorities for Bakshi.

Before his appointment as the Eastern Army Commander, he was the Chief of Staff of Northern Command at Udhampur – the number two position in the command – which gave him adequate exposure to the western front as well.

Bakshi's predecessor in Kolkata, Lt Gen M M S Rai, has taken over as the new army vice chief on August 1. Rai was commissioned into the Corps of Engineers (Bombay Sappers) in 1976 and joined an armoured engineer regiment later.

The army's training command in Shimla, too, got a new chief as Lt Gen PM Hariz, took over command of the Army Training Command.

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