CDS: Amendments in Armed Forces Service Rules

Ministry of defence recently issued gazette notifications for amending regulations of Indian Army, Indian Navy and Indian Air Force, related to appointment of the Chief of Defence Staff.

Key Facts

  • The post of Chief of Defence staff is vacant since demise of General Bipin Rawat in a helicopter (Mi-17V5) crash in December 2021.
  • As per notification, government may consider an officer for this post, who is serving as Air Marshal or Air Chief Marshal or a retired officer in the similar ranks but below the age of 62 years on appointment
  • Government would made considerations, “if considered necessary, in public interest.”
  • As per notification, government may extend the service of Chief of Defence Staff “for a period as it may deem necessary”, but would be subject to a maximum age of 65 years.

Chief of Defence Staff of Indian Armed Forces (CDS)

CDS is the permanent Chairman and military head of Chiefs of Staff Committee (CoSC) of Indian Armed Forces. He is the highest-ranking uniformed officer on active duty in Indian military. He acts as the chief military adviser to Defence Minister. He also heads the Department of Military Affairs. He is assisted by a vice-chief, who is the Chief of Integrated Defence Staff.

Who was the first Chief of Defence staff?

First Chief of Defence Staff took office on January 1, 2020. This position was created with an objective of improving coordination and overall integration of combat capabilities of armed forces.

General Bipin Rawat

General Bipin Rawat was an Indian military officer. He was a four-star general of Indian Army. He was also the first Chief of Defence Staff (CDS) from January 2020 until his demise in December 2021. Before taking over as the CDS, he was the 57th Chairman of the Chiefs of Staff Committee of the Indian Armed Forces and the 26th Chief of Army Staff (COAS) of the Indian Army.

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