According to well-informed sources, Gen Bikram Singh intends to replace the current Director General Military Operations (DGMO), Lt Gen Ashok Choudhury.
Lt Gen Choudhury, whose name was twice proposed by the previous Chief Gen VK Singh for the post of Director General Assam Rifles--but was rejected by the Defence Ministry--may be shifted out as GOC of an area in the East.
If that happens it would be one of the rare such moves as three star officers who function as Principal Staff Officers (PSOs) in the Army HQ, normally retire from there.
|Gen Bikram Singh in Eastern Ladakh on Saturday: Photo: |
Courtesy: Indian Army
Lt Gen Vinod Bhatia, currently Director General, Infantry is tipped to replace Lt Gen Choudhury. Lt Gen Bhatia, a paratrooper, was the 33 Corps Commander before taking over as DG Infantry late in 2011.
Lt Gen KS Bajwa, currently Commandant Infantry School at Mhow may take over as DG, Infantry.
Lt Gen Ranbir Singh, currently at the Strategic Forces Command, may take over as DG, Assam Rifles.
It is not known who will replace him at SFC and Lt Gen Bajwa at the Infantry School, if the proposed postings go through.
Interestingly, Lt Gens Bhatia, Bajwa and Ranbir Singh have worked closely with Gen Bikram Singh during his stint as Eastern Army Commander. While Lt Gen Bhatia was GOC, 33 Corps, based at Sukna, Lt Gen Bajwa was Chief of Staff and Lt Gen Ranbir Singh was MGGS ( Major General, General Staff) with the current Army Chief in Fort Williams.
The new appointments, proposed last week, are currently with the Defence Ministry.
Once implemented, Gen Biram Singh would have put the stamp of his authority over the top hierarchy.
While eyebrows may be raised over the downgrading of the current DGMO--if that happens--the Army Chief is well within his rights to choose his own team.
Past Chiefs have brought in their own choices in crucial appointments. Apart from these top changes, several new divisional and Corps Commanders will be selected in the next six months as tenures of incumbent officers get completed and new promotions take place.