Updated: August 22, 2021 9:10:21 am
THREE Chiefs of Indian Armed Forces — who are coursemates from the National Defence Academy in Pune — visited their respective parent squadrons during their visit to the alma mater and interacted with the cadets, faculty and officers of the premier tri-services academy.
The Indian Express has earlier reported that Chief of Air Staff Air Chief Marshal RKS Bhadauria, Chief of Naval Staff Admiral Karambir Singh and Chief of Army Staff General MM Naravane — who are coursemates from the 56th course of the NDA — came together at the academy on Friday and Saturday in a very rare occurrence.
During their visit, the chiefs paid homage at the Hut of Remembrance, which commemorates ex-NDA officers of the Armed Forces who have laid down their lives in the line of duty. The service chiefs also visited their parent squadrons — the Hunter Squadron for Admiral Singh, and Lima Squadron for Gen Naravane and Air Chief Marshal Bhadauria — and interacted with the cadets of these squadrons. An interaction with the faculty and staff of NDA was also organised towards the end of their visit.
“The visit marks a historical moment for this prestigious Tri-Service Training Academy as all three service chiefs are coursemates from the 56th Course of NDA, which is rare and unique. Earlier, it was only in 1991 that all three service chiefs were coursemates from the first NDA (erstwhile Joint Services Wing) course,” said a press statement issued through Defence PRO, Pune.
Admiral Karambir Singh assumed charge as the Chief of the Naval Staff on May 31, 2019. Air Chief Marshal Rakesh Kumar Singh Bhadauria took over as Chief of the Air Staff on September 30, 2019 and General MM Naravane became the Chief of Army Staff on December 31 the same year.
“Speaking on behalf of the three chiefs on this historical occasion, the Chief of the Naval Staff dwelled upon the emerging trends of modern warfare. He also exhorted the cadets to imbibe the basic tenets of modern military leadership. The Chiefs reviewed the ongoing training of cadets and the available training and administrative infrastructure of NDA. Their visit to the Academy has provided unmatched inspiration and sense of pride to all the cadets and would further catalyze them to strive for excellence in their military careers and reinforce the Spirit of Camaraderie and Jointmanship amongst the three services,” the press statement said.
The coming together of the three chiefs holds significance on the backdrop that Air Chief Marshal Bhadauria — who has also held position of the Commandant of the NDA in the past — is slated to superannuate by the end of September.
The Chiefs have come together at the Academy just days after the Supreme Court, in an interim order, allowed women to appear for the entrance exam of the NDA.
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