Lt Gen Bipin Rawat was named the next army chief on Saturday, as the government abandoned a three-decade-old tradition of elevating senior-most officers as service chiefs. The vice-chief will succeed Gen Dalbir Singh, who retires on December 31.
1. Lt Gen Bipin Rawat joined the Indian Army in December 1978.
2. Rawat won the Sword of Honour when he graduated from the Indian Military Academy in 1978.
3. He was commissioned into the 5/11 Gorkha Rifles.
4. He is second consecutive chief from the Gorkha Rifles. Gen Dalbir Singh was commissioned into 4/5 Gorkha Rifles.
5. Gen Rawat is from a military background. His father was also a lieutenant general.
6. Rawat was commanding the Pune-based Southern Command before he was appointed the army vice-chief.
7. Rawat miraculously survived a chopper accident when he was the commander of the Dimapur-based Headquarters 3 Corps.
8. Rawat, who learnt his art in Kashmir and the northeast, headed the Indian brigade during the UN peacekeeping operation in the Democratic Republic of the Congo in 2008.Indian peacekeepers performed splendidly under his leadership. The general is credited with providing dynamic leadership under the UN banner. The Indian peacekeepers switched their approach from a velvet glove to an iron fist under his leadership.