Vice Admiral R Hari Kumar on Sunday took charge as the Flag Officer Commanding-In-Chief of Western Naval Command (WNC) from C Ajit Kumar in a ceremony at the Command Post of Headquarters, Western Naval Command, Mumbai.
Vice Admiral Ajit Kumar retired after four decades of service in the Indian Navy.
The outgoing and incoming Commanders-in-Chief were accorded a Guard of Honour after which the handing over of the baton to the new Commander-in-Chief took place. On assuming command, Vice Admiral Hari Kumar laid a wreath at the Gaurav Stambh monument.
“Vice Admiral R Hari Kumar, an alumnus of the National Defence Academy was commissioned into the Indian Navy on January 1, 1983. He specialised in Gunnery and has commanded five ships including a Destroyer and the aircraft carrier INS Viraat,” stated an official statement from the Navy.
“He has held important staff appointments both ashore and afloat and has also been Naval Advisor to the Government of Seychelles. On promotion to flag rank, he has held the appointments of Commandant of Naval War College at Goa, Flag Officer Sea Training, Flag Officer Commanding Western Fleet, Chief of Staff at Western and Chief of Personnel at Naval Headquarters,” read the official statement.
Vice Admiral R Hari Kumar is a recipient of the Vishist Seva Medal, Ati Vishisht Seva Medal and Param Vishisht Seva Medal for distinguished service.
“The outgoing FOC-in-C, Vice Admiral Ajit Kumar, PVSM, AVSM, VSM, ADC has seen extensive operational deployments in response to developing security situations in the post the Pulwama attack and the Galwan crisis across the Indian Ocean Region,” further read the official statement.
“During the period WNC was also at the forefront of anti-piracy missions in the Gulf of Aden and in Operation Samudra Setu for the evacuation of Indian nationals from various countries during the COVID-19 pandemic,” added the official statement.