New Delhi: Air Marshal Arup Raha, an ace fighter pilot, is likely to be the next chief of the Indian Air Force, succeeding incumbent NAK Browne who is retiring on December 31.
The process of appointment for the top post in the IAF has already been initiated and Raha is likely to be designated as the next Chief of Air Staff by the end of this month, sources said here.
Raha, who is presently the Vice Chief of the IAF, is the senior-most three-star officer in the force and has been the frontrunner for the post.
Commissioned in December 1974 in the fighter stream of the IAF, he has a rich experience of over 3,400 hours of flying fighter aircraft of different types. He is an experienced Qualified Flying Instructor (QFI).
Raha has served as Directing Staff at Flying Instructors School, Tambaram (Tamil Nadu) as well as at the Gwalior-based Tactics and Combat Development Establishment of the IAF.
Raha has also served as the Military and Air attache in the Embassy of India in Ukraine from 1999 to 2001.