Tejas test pilot RKS Bhadauria is next IAF chief

Tribune News Service
New Delhi, September 19

Air Marshal Rakesh Kumar Singh Bhadauria has been appointed as the next Chief of the Indian Air Force. He will take over on September 30, when the present IAF Chief Air Chief Marshall BS Dhanoa retires.

Air Marshal Bhadauria, who is present the Vice Chief of the IAF, was scheduled to superannuate the same day as the Chief on September 30. In the forces, the Chief retires at 62 years of age while those at rank lower—Air Marshal – retire at 60 years of age. 

In the past there has been case of Air Marshal NC Suri becoming the Chief the same day he was scheduled to retire, on July 31, 1991.

During his younger days, Air Marshal Bhadauria, commanded the 5 squadron ‘the Tuskers’ based at Ambala.

Notably, he takes over at time when the IAF is looking to add more of the Indian made Light combat Air Craft (LCA) Tejas. He has had long association with the development of the plane over the past two decades. He has been a test pilot with the Aeronautical development Agency (ADA), that has designed the Tejas.

He has been a test pilot, an Air Attache at Russia. He has commanded the Southern Command of the IAF and also the Training Command of the force. He is presently the Vice Chief of the IAF.

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