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Admiral Sunil Lanba
Chief of the Naval Staff & Chairman, Chiefs of Staff Committee (COSC)

Admiral Sunil Lanba, a Naval Thoroughbred and until recently the Flag Officer Commanding-in-Chief, Western Naval Command, has assumed the high office of the Chief of the Naval Staff on May 31, 2016, consequent upon superannuation of Admiral R.K. Dhowan.

Born on July 17, 1957, Admiral Sunil Lanba was commissioned on January 1, 1978, into the Executive Branch of the Indian Navy. A Navigation and Direction specialist, he has served onboard numerous ships in both the Eastern and Western Fleets. His career spanning nearly four decades includes tenures at sea, ashore at various Headquarters, Operational and Training establishments, as well as tri-services institutions. His sea tenures include commands of INS Kakinada, a specialised Mine Counter Measure Vessel, INS Himgiri, the indigenous Leander Class Frigate, INS Ranvijay, a Kashin Class Destroyer and INS Mumbai, the indigenous Delhi Class Destroyer. He has also been the Executive Officer of the aircraft carrier, INS Viraat and the Fleet Operations Officer of the Western Fleet.

An alumnus of the National Defence Academy, Khadakwasla, Defence Services Staff College, Wellington, College of Defence Management, Secundrabad and Royal College of Defence Studies, London, Admiral Lanba’s career has been enriched with his vast experience at sea, training, operational and tri-services tour of duty both within India and with international navies.Before taking over as Flag Officer Commanding-in-Chief, Western Naval Command, he was Flag Officer Commanding-in-Chief, Southern Naval Command, Vice Chief of the Naval Staff and the Commandant, National Defence College, New Delhi.

As a Training Officer at the National Defence Academy, Directing Staff at the College of Defence Management and as the Commandant of the National Defence College, he has been deeply engaged with professional training, shaping future leadership and skilling of the officers of the Indian Armed Forces.

On elevation to flag rank he has held several significant capacity and capability assignments for the Indian Navy. He was responsible for transformation in training methodology for the future Indian Navy as the Chief of Staff, Southern Naval Command. Thereafter, he took on the mantle of the Flag Officer Sea Training, where he ushered changes to enhance battle effectiveness of ships and rationalised combat manning onboard. Later, he took over as the Flag Officer Commanding Maharashtra and Gujarat Naval Area and implemented several significant coastal security initiatives along with multi-agency co-ordination mechanisms that have since ensured safe seas and coastal areas.

On promotion as Vice Admiral, he has been the Chief of Staff, Eastern Naval Command, and Commandant of the National Defence College. In his capacity as the Vice Chief of Naval Staff, he streamlined the frame work for transformation of Indian Navy’s combat capabilities and infrastructure development as well as tri-services initiatives towards enhancing integration and jointness.

He is a recipient of Param Vishist Seva Medal and Ati Vishist Seva Medal for meritorious service and is also the Honorary Aide-de-Camp to the President of India.

Admiral Sunil Lanba, a son of a former naval officers the first to rise to become the Chief of the Naval Staff. He is also the first Mayo College alumnus to rise to become the Chief of any of the armed forces of India.

 
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