The Union Government has appointed Air Marshal Birender Singh Dhanoa as the next Chief of the Air Staff of the Indian Air Force (IAF). He succeeds Arup Raha who retires on December 31, 2016. Prior to this appointment he was Vice-Chief of IAF. He is the third person from Sikh community to head the IAF after Arjan Singh and Dilbag Singh.
About Air Marshal B.S. Dhanoa
- He is an alumnus of Rashtriya Indian Military College (RIMC) and National Defence Academy (NDA). He was commissioned into the IAF in June 1978 as a fighter pilot.
- Before being appointed as Vice Chief he was the Air Officer Commanding-in-Chief of the South Western Air Command.
- Earlier, he had served as Chief Instructor (Air) at the Defence Services Staff College, Wellington in Tamil Nadu, Assistant Chief of the Air Staff (Intelligence) at Air Headquarters and Senior Air Staff Officer of two operational Commands.
- He had commanded a fighter squadron and had flown numerous night-strike missions during the Kargil operations in the mountainous terrain.
- He is recipient of Presidential awards Ati Vishisht Seva Medal, Yudh Seva Medal and Vayusena Medal for his distinguished services.