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Sri Lanka Army

Defenders of the Nation

30th November 2015 18:21:28 Hours

Indian Chief of the Army Staff Arrives, Providing an Impetus to Bilateral Defence Ties

Expecting to provide an impetus to defence cooperation between India and Sri Lanka and discuss issues of bilateral relevance, Chief of the Army Staff of the Indian Army, General Dalbir Singh Suhag arrived in Sri Lanka Sunday (29) afternoon on a five-day long official visit at the invitation of his Sri Lankan counterpart, Lieutenant General Crishanthe De Silva.

A red carpet welcome ceremony, coloured by traditional Ves dancers greeted him on arrival at the tarmac at Colombo Bandaranaike International Airport.

Lieutenant General Crishanthe De Silva, Commander of the Army, together with Mrs Nayana De Silva, President, Army Seva Vanitha Unit (ASVU) were  at the venue to extend a warm welcome to the visiting India’s Army Chief, General Dalbir Singh Suhag and his spouse, Mrs Namitha Suhag.

General Dalbir Singh who had served the Indian Peace Keeping Forces (IPKF) in Sri Lanka in 1987 as a Company Commander is the 26th Chief of the Army Staff (Army Commander) the Indian Army has produced and proudly commands the 1.3 million-strong Indian Army.

The delegation is comprised of the spouse of General Dalbir Singh, Mrs Namitha Suhag, Brigadier Gopal Gurang, Colonel Amitabh Jha, and Captain N.K Saraswat.

India’s Deputy High Commissioner for Sri Lanka Mr. Arindam Bagchi, Major General Sudantha Ranasinghe, Senior Liaison Officer and Commander, Security Force Headquarters - West, Major General Mahesh Senanayake, Military Secretary, Brigadier H.M.J.K. Gunaratne, Assistant Liaison Officer and Director Operations and Captain Prakash Gopalan, Defence Adviser at Indian High Commission were also at the airport to receive the Chief of the Army Staff.

During his stay in Sri Lanka, the visiting Army Chief is scheduled to call on the Prime Minister Hon. Ranil Wickramasinghe, Field Marshal Sarath Fonseka, State Minister of Defence, Defence Secretary, Chief of Defence Staff, Air Force Commander and a few others. Moreover, he will attend wreath-laying ceremonies at the Indian Peace Keeping Force (IPKF) cenotaph at Battaramulla and the memorial in Palaly, Jaffna during his stay in the isle.

A parallel separate reception, organized by Mrs Nayana De Silva, President, Army Seva Vanitha Unit and its members in honour of the spouse of the visiting Army Chief, Mrs Namita Suhag, will get underway on Monday (30) at Hotel Kingsbury.

Here follows Gen Dalbir Singh’s profile:

GENERAL DALBIR SINGH, PVSM, UYSM, AVSM, VSM, ADC

General Dalbir Singh PVSM UYSM AVSM VSM ADC was commissioned into 4/5 GR (FF) in June 1974. He is an alumnus of Sainik School, Chittorgarh and joined the National Defence Academy (NDA) in 1970. He holds Masters Degrees in Management Studies from the Osmania University and Strategic Studies from the Chennai University. The General has attended various career courses in India and aboard which include Long Defence Management Course at the CDM, Secunderabad, NDC Course at New Delhi, Executive Course in USA and Senior Mission Leaders Course (UN) in Kenya.

In a distinguished military career spanning four decades he has served critical Command and Staff appointments which include tactical and operational levels of command in active counter insurgency and proxy war environment in the North East and Jammu & Kashmir. The General possesses tremendous operational experience which includes tenures as a Company Commander in coperation PAWAN in Sri Lanka, raising and commanding a Rashtriya Rifles Battalion in Nagaland and an Infantry Brigade deeply committed in intense Counter Insurgency Operations in the Kashmir Valley. He also holds the distinction of commanding a Mountain Division in Jammu & Kashmir deployed on the Line of Control in High Altitude Area. The General has commanded a Corps looking after the dual responsibility of Counter Insurgency Operations in the North Eastern States as well as conventional operational tasks along the Indo - China Border and has also been the General Officer Commanding in Chief, Eastern Command.  The General has served as an Instructor in Army School of Mechanical Transport (ASMT), Bangalore as well as Indian Military Academy (IMA) Dehradun. He has also served important staff appointments at the Divisional and the Corps levels. He has also held important assignments in the Army Headquarters, both as a Colonel and as a Brigadier and later as the VCOAS. The General has also served the sensitive appointment of Inspector General SFF (Special Frontier Force), Cabinet Secretariat and has tremendous understanding of the capabilities of this force. The General has been holding the appointment of Colonel of the Regiment, 5 GR (FF) from 19 April 2011 and the President Gorkha Brigade from 01 January 2014. General assumed duties at the Office of Chief of the Army Staff (COAS) of the Indian Army on 31 July 2014 as the 26th COAS. The General is highly decorated and is the proud recipient of the Param Vishisht Seva Medal, Uttam Yudh Seva Medal, Ati Vishisht Seva Medal and Vishisht Seva Medal. He is a keen sportsman and takes keen interest in Riding and Swimming. He is married to Mrs Namita Suhag who is a political science graduate from Delhi University.