New Delhi | Jagran News Desk: The Union Defence Ministry on Tuesday night announced that Vice Admiral R Hari Kumar, who is currently serving as the Flag Officer Commanding-in-Chief of the Western Naval Command, will take charge as the Chief of Naval Staff following the retirement of Admiral Karambir Singh from the service on November 30 this year.

"The government has appointed Vice Admiral R Hari Kumar, presently Flag Officer Commanding-in-Chief Western Naval Command, as the next Chief of the Naval Staff with effect from the afternoon of November 30," the Union Defence Ministry said in a statement, as reported by news agency PTI.

Here's everything you need to know about India's next Chief of Naval Staff:

* Born on April 12, 1962, in Kerala's Trivandrum, Vice Admiral R Hari Kumar is presently the Western Naval Command chief. In January 1, 1993, he was commissioned into the Navy's Executive Branch. After Vice Admiral Chawla, Vice Admiral Kumar is the senior-most naval commander.

* Vice Admiral Hari Kumar has completed courses at the Naval War College, US, the Army War College, Mhow, and the Royal College of Defence Studies, UK. He has been decorated with the Param Vishist Seva Medal (PVSM), the Ati Vishist Seva Medal (AVSM) and Vishist Seva Medal (VSM).

* During his long and distinguished service spanning nearly 39 years, the Vice Admiral has served in a variety of command, staff and instructional appointments.

* Vice Admiral Kumar's sea command includes INS Nishank, Missile Corvette, INS Kora and Guided Missile Destroyer INS Ranvir. He also commanded Indian Navy's aircraft carrier INS Viraat.

* Before taking over as FOC-in-C Western Naval Command, he was Chief of Integrated Staff Committee of headquarters, Integrated Defence Staff.

* Vice Admiral Kumar has served as Fleet Operations Officer of the Western Fleet.

Posted By: Mallika Mehzabeen