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Chief of the Naval Staff
ADMIRAL RK DHOWAN, PVSM, AVSM, YSM, ADC
Admiral RK Dhowan is an alumnus of the National Defence Academy Defence Services Staff College and Naval War College, Newport, Rhode Island, USA.
His illustrious career began with being adjudged as the Best Cadet and winning of the coveted award Telescope during sea training on board INS Delhi. He was commissioned in the Navy on 01 Jan 75. He went on to bag the Sword of honour for his course. Consequent to earning his Watchkeeping ticket on erstwhile Delhi, his first tryst with Navigation was when he was appointed the commissioning Navigator of Bhavnagar. He was baptised in the art of Navigation when as a young lieutenant armed with his sextant and the keen eyes of an aspiring navigator, he sailed Bhavnagar from the port of Riga in the Baltic Sea to the shores of Mumbai. This baptism by fire culminated in his specialising in Navigation and Direction. Post specialisation he went onto to navigate Talwar and Ganga. With the induction of the Sea Harriers, he was selected to undergo the Sea Harrier Direction course at Yeovilton, UK. His tenures at INAS 300 and Vikrant shaped the future of direction specialisation within the Navy.
The important staff appointments held by him at Naval Headquarters during his illustrious career include Deputy Director Naval Operations, Joint Director Naval Plans, Assistant Chief of the Naval Staff (Policy and plans), and Deputy Chief of Naval Staff, Integrated Headquarters, Ministry of Defence (Navy). He has also served as the Senior Instructor at DSSC Wellington.
The Admiral has commanded frontline warships of the Western Fleet namely Khukri, Ranjit and Delhi. Besides serving as Indian Naval Adviser at the High Commission of India, London he has also served as Chief Staff Officer (Operations), HQWNC.
The Admiral had the proud privilege of commanding the Eastern Fleet as Flag Officer Commanding Eastern Fleet (FOCEF), and subsequently took over as Chief of Staff (COS) at HQENC, Visakhapatnam. The Admiral also has the distinction of commanding the prestigious National Defence Academy, his alma mater as the Commandant before serving as the Deputy Chief of Naval Staff. Thereafter he assumed charged as the Vice Chief of the Naval Staff in Aug 11. He has assumed charge as the 22nd Chief of the Naval Staff on 17 Apr 14.
The Admiral has been appointed as Principal Honorary Naval ADC to the President of India with effect from 17 Apr 2014.