Air Marshal Rakesh Kumar Singh Bhadauria on Wednesday took over as the Vice Chief of Air Staff succeeding Air Marshal Anil Khosla.
Bhadauria was earlier heading the Indian Air Force's Bengaluru-based Training Command. Earlier as a Deputy Chief, he was the chairman of India's negotiating team for 36 Rafale combat aircraft deal with France.
He is an alumnus of the National Defence Academy and was commissioned in the fighter stream of IAF on 15 Jun 1980 as the recipient of ‘Sword of Honour’. He completed his Masters in Defence Studies from Command and Staff College, Bangladesh.
Air Marshal Rakesh Kumar Singh Bhadauria took over as Vice Chief of the Air Staff, today. pic.twitter.com/1KrZHvmaXf
— ANI (@ANI) May 1, 2019
He has a flying experience on over twenty six types of fighters and transport aircraft with the unique distinction of being an Experimental Test Pilot, a Cat 'A' Qualified Flying Instructor and a Pilot Attack Instructor. He was commended by the Chief of Air Staff in 1987 and he has been awarded Vayu Sena Medal in 2002, Ati Vishist Seva Medal in 2013 and Param Vishist Seva Medal in 2018.
In the past, he has also held a number of appointments which include the command of a Jaguar Squadron and a premier Air Force Station in South-Western sector, Commanding Officer of Flight Test Squadron at Aircraft and System Testing Establishment, Chief Test Pilot and Project Director of National Flight Test Centre on Light Combat Aircraft (LCA) project.
He was also extensively involved in the initial prototype flight tests on the LCA. He was the Air Attache, Moscow, Assistant Chief of the Air Staff (Projects), Commandant of the National Defence Academy, Senior Air Staff Officer at HQ CAC and the Deputy Chief of the Air Staff at Air HQ.