Former Indian Army Vice Chief, Lt. General (Retired) Sarath Chand on Saturday joined the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP).
He joined the BJP in the national capital at the party headquarters in the presence of Union Minister of External Affairs Sushma Swaraj.
He served as the vice chief of Army staff from January 13, 2017, till May 31, 2018, until his retirement.
Chand, who hails from Kerala's Kottarakkara, is the second Malayali after Lt Gen Philip Campose to hold the post of Vice Chief of Army Staff.
On June 1979, he was commissioned into the Garhwal Rifles and has held an active combat leadership role. Chand has also served as Colonel of the Regiment of Garhwal Rifles. He has also served in the United Nations mission in Somalia.
He assumed the office of VCOAS after General Bipin Rawat was promoted to Chief of Army Staff (COAS).
An alumnus of National Defence Academy, Pune and Indian Military Academy, Dehradun, he also attended the Defence Services Staff College in Wellington, Army War College, Mhow and a National Defence College, New Delhi.
In his career spanning 38 years, Chand has been awarded the Vishisht Seva Medal (2006), the Ati Vishisht Seva Medal (2014), the Uttam Yudh Seva Medal (2016) and the Param Vishisht Seva Medal (2018).