Vijay Kumar Singh


General Vijay Kumar SinghRetired, PVSM, AVSM, YSM, ADC born 10 May 1951 is an Indian politician and a retired four star general in the Indian Army In May 2014, he was appointed as the Minister of State of External Affairs and Minister of state independent charge for North East Region in the NDA-led Indian Government On 10 November 2014, the Development of North Eastern Region ministry was passed to Jitendra Singh

During his military career, Singh served as the 24th Chief of Army Staff of the Indian Army from 2010 to 2012 He became the first serving Indian military chief to take the Government of India to court

In 2014, after his retirement from the military, he joined the Bharatiya Janata Party BJP and was elected as the Member of Parliament of the Lok Sabha in the Indian general elections, 2014, from the Ghaziabad constituency of Uttar Pradesh

He has written his autobiographical book, Courage and Conviction

Contents

  • 1 Early life and education
  • 2 Military career
  • 3 Political career
    • 31 MoS of External Affairs and MoS independent charge for North East Region
      • 311 Role in Operation Raahat of April 2015
  • 4 Honours and awards
    • 41 Military awards
  • 5 See also
  • 6 References
  • 7 External links

Early life and educationedit

Vijay Kumar Singh was born in Bapora village, Bhiwani district, Haryana His father was a Colonel in the Indian Army and grandfather a Junior Commissioned Officer Singh was educated at Birla Public School, Pilani, Jhunjhunu, Rajasthan He is also an alumnus of National Defence Academy India1

Military careeredit

Singh was commissioned into the 2nd Battalion of the Rajput Regiment Kali Chindi on 14 June 1970 He commanded the same unit when it was positioned along the Line of Control with Pakistan2

He graduated from the Defence Services Staff College He was an honours graduate of the United States Army Infantry School, a graduate of the Rangers Course at Fort Benning and the United States Army War College in Carlisle, Pennsylvania3

Singh is experienced in both counter-insurgency and high-altitude operations He also saw action as a young Lieutenant in the Indo-Pakistani War of 1971 while serving as an intelligence officer of 2 Rajputcitation needed During his career he has served in various positions:

  • Instructor in the Indian Military Training Team IMTRAT headquarters in Bhutancitation needed
  • Instructor at Infantry School twice and Chief Instructor at JLW Commando Wing, Belgaum456
  • Military Operations Directorate at the Army Headquarters
  • Served as CO 2 Rajput, the battalion he was commissioned in
  • Served as the Colonel General Staff Col GS of 12 Infantry Division
  • Commanded the 168 Infantry brigade at Samba47
  • Brigadier General Staff BGS of Jalandhar based XI Corps during Operation Parakram when Indian troops were mobilised on the border in the wake of the attack on the Indian Parliament in 2001
  • Commanded the Victor Force, part of the Rashtriya Rifles
  • Commanded Ambala-based II Corps
  • Commanded the Army's Eastern Command

Singh became the 24th Chief of Army Staff on 31 March 2010, and was the first commando to achieve that position8 Towards the end of his career there was a dispute regarding his date of birth, causing him to become the first serving officer of the Indian Army to take the government to court9 As a consequence of an error made when he had enrolled with the National Defence Academy in 1965, official records mis-stated the year in which he was born He withdrew the writ in February 2012 when, according to The Hindu, the Supreme Court of India "refused to intervene" The Court noted that there was no dispute regarding his actual date of birth and that the matter being contested was regarding how that had been recorded It ruled that Singh had on three occasions accepted the misrecorded date10

The BBC noted in 2012 that defence experts considered a drive to modernise the Indian army had suffered from "a lack of planning and acrimony between the military and the defence ministry" This report followed an interview given by Singh in March 2012 that had caused a political row Singh said that over a year earlier he had reported to A K Antony, the defence minister, that he had been offered a bribe of US$27 million if the army bought several hundred sub-standard vehicles Antony issued a rebuttal to the interview, saying that he had requested at the time that Singh provide a written report regarding the incident and that this had never been submitted Two days after the interview with Singh, correspondence between the general and the Prime Minister, Manmohan Singh, was leaked This criticised the standard of India's defences and caused a further political row11

Singh retired as Chief of Army Staff on 31 May 2012 He was succeeded by General Bikram Singh12

Political careeredit

Subsequent to his retirement from the military, Singh showed support for the anti-corruption movement13 He was seen on the stage in August 2012 at the Ramlila Maidan in New Delhi, where Ramdev was fasting in protest of alleged black money and corruption He was reported to have declared that "It is shocking but true that over two lakh farmers have committed suicide since 1995 The problems of farmers will have to take the forefront in this movement as the government has turned a blind eye to their woes"14 Around that time he also compared the movement, whose principal figurehead was Anna Hazare, to that of the Bihar Movement that had been led by Jayaprakash Narayan in 1975 He said that "When I evaluate the country's present condition, it is similar to that of 1975 Jayaprakash Narayan had then said Vacate the throne, common people are coming He felt then that corruption is the root of all problems  the situation in the country is the same today"15

VK Singh at an International conference at the Center for Foreign Policy and Security Studies, Gujarat National Law University

Singh led an agitation with Yoga Guru Ramdev on 23 December 2012, at Jantar Mantar, New Delhi, on the 2012 Delhi gang rape case1617

Singh joined the Bharatiya Janata Party on 1 March 201418 He won the Ghaziabad Lok Sabha constituency seat in the 2014 Indian general election, defeating Raj Babbar of the Indian National Congress by a margin of 567,260 votes19

MoS of External Affairs and MoS independent charge for North East Regionedit

In May 2014, Singh was appointed as Minister of State of External Affairs and Minister of state independent charge for North East Region in the NDA-led Indian Government20 He was relieved of responsibility for the North East Region in November 2014, when Jitendra Singh replaced him21 He has held the office of Minister of State Independent Charge under the Statistics and Programme Implementation portfolio in the NDA governmentcitation needed

Role in Operation Raahat of April 2015edit

Further information: Operation Raahat

Singh is praised for leading Operation Raahat, a rescue mission to evacuate Indian citizens and other foreign nationals from Yemen during 2015 Yemeni Crisis22 Prime Minister Narendra Modi in April 2015 said, “I believe this is the first time in the world that a government minister has stood on the battlefield like a soldier to do this work  I salute General V K Singh”23

Honours and awardsedit

Military awardsedit

Param Vishisht Seva Medal Ati Vishist Seva Medal Yudh Seva Medal Poorvi Star
Special Service Medal Sangram Medal Operation Vijay Medal Operation Parakram Medal
Sainya Seva Medal High Altitude Service Medal Videsh Seva Medal 50th Anniversary of Independence Medal
25th Anniversary of Independence Medal 30 Years Long Service Medal 20 Years Long Service Medal 9 Years Long Service Medal
US Army Ranger Tab

V K Singh won the following awards during his career:24

  • Param Vishisht Seva Medal
  • Ati Vishisht Seva Medal
  • Yudh Seva Medal for his distinguished service during Operation Pawan

During his service as the COAS, V K Singh was appointed Honorary Aide-De-Camp to the President of India He was the Colonel of The Rajput Regiment to which he belonged and also Honorary Colonel of The Brigade of Guards, by virtue of being the Army Chief

On 11 March 2011, Singh was inducted into the United States Army War College Class of 2001 graduate International Fellows Hall of Fame He is the 33rd International Fellow and the first Indian Armed Forces officer to be inducted25

See alsoedit

  • Chief of the Army Staff India

Referencesedit

  1. ^ Mohan, Raman 24 January 2010 "Bapoda village basks in Gen VK Singh’s glory" Chandigarh: The Tribune Retrieved 2010-04-03 
  2. ^ Dutta, Sujan 30 July 2011 "Generation shift in air force" The Telegraph Retrieved 2012-03-26 
  3. ^ "Gen VK Singh battles odds, becomes 26th army chief" DNA 31 March 2010 Retrieved 2012-03-26 
  4. ^ a b "Change of Guard - General VK Singh new COAS" Sainik Samachar 10 April 2010 Retrieved 2014-06-15 
  5. ^ "Did you know: Gen VK Singh is a small time movie star!" First Post 23 January 2012 Retrieved 2014-06-15 
  6. ^ "When the army chief did a cameo in Bollywood" India Today 3 April 2010 Retrieved 2014-06-15 
  7. ^ "Gen V K Singh takes over as Army Chief" India Strategic 31 March 2010 Retrieved 2014-06-15 
  8. ^ "Gen V K Singh takes over as Army Chief" India Strategic March 2010 Retrieved 2014-05-27 
  9. ^ Gokhale, Nitin A 26 March 2012 "Details of who allegedly offered Rs 14-crore bribe to Army chief" NDTV Retrieved 2012-03-26 
  10. ^ Venkatesan, J 10 February 2012 "Army Chief loses age war" The Hindu Retrieved 2012-02-11 
  11. ^ "India's corruption scandals" BBC 
  12. ^ "Gen VK Singh to retire today" =The Hindu 31 May 2012 Retrieved 2012-05-31 
  13. ^ "VK Singh: throw the corrupt out of power" 4 August 2012 
  14. ^ Ali, Mohammad 13 August 2014 "Ramdev takes on Congress, warns of march to Parliament" The Hindu 
  15. ^ "VK Singh now battles with Baba Ramdev" Zee News ANI 12 August 2012 
  16. ^ "V K Singh, Baba Ramdev named in FIR for violence at Jantar Mantar" Financial Express PTI 24 December 2012 
  17. ^ "V K Singh, Ramdev named in FIR for violence at Jantar Mantar" Times of India 24 December 2012 
  18. ^ "Former Army Chief Gen V K Singh joins BJP along with other Officers" Bihar Prabha IANS 1 March 2014 Retrieved 2014-03-01 
  19. ^ Sinha, Arunav 16 May 2014 "Former chief of Army staff General retired VK Singh defeats Raj Babbar of Congress by 567260 votes to register a win at Ghaziabad" The Times of India TNN Archived from the original on 15 January 2017 Retrieved 15 January 2017 
  20. ^ "List of ministers in Narendra Modi's government" Economic Times 27 May 2014 Retrieved 2014-06-07 
  21. ^ Sharma, Aman 11 November 2014 "What went wrong VK Singh lost Doner to MoS for personnel Jitendra Singh" Economic Times Retrieved 2015-04-21 
  22. ^ "India begins evacuating citizens" The Hindu 31 March 2015 Retrieved 2015-03-31 
  23. ^ "Presstitutes remark row: PM Narendra Modi says media ignoring V K Singh’s good work in Yemen" Indian Express 19 April 2015 Retrieved 2015-04-20 
  24. ^ "Gen VK Singh is new Chief of the Army Staff" The Hindu 1 April 2010 Retrieved 2012-03-26 
  25. ^ "V K Singh: the veteran of wars who lost the age battle" Daily Bhaskar 26 March 2012 Retrieved 2012-03-26 

External linksedit

  • General V K Singh, PVSM, AVSM, YSM, ADC in the Indian Army official website
Military offices
Preceded by
Deepak Kapoor
Chief of Army Staff
2010–2012
Succeeded by
Bikram Singh


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