Air Marshal Dilip Kumar Patnaik on Sunday assumed charge as the air officer commanding in-chief of Eastern Air Command of the Indian Air Force, officials said. Air Marshal Amit Dev, who had held the post so far, has taken over as the commanding officer in-chief of the Western Command, one of the IAF spokespersons told PTI.
Patnaik was commissioned into the fighter stream of the Indian Air Force on June 8, 1984. He is an alumnus of the National Defence Academy, Khadakwasla, Defence Services Staff College and College of Air Warfare. A fighter combat leader, he has more than 2,500 hours of accident-free flying experience on various types of aircraft.
Patnaik has held a number of important positions including command of a frontline fighter base, assistant chief of air staff operations (air defence) and commandant, College of Air Warfare. Before assuming the new charge, he was the senior air staff officer at headquarters, Central Air Command. The air officer flew many live bombing missions during Kargil conflict for which he was honoured with the Vayu Sena Medal (Gallantry). He was also awarded Ati Vishist Seva Medal in January 2020 for his distinguished service.