All about the nation: Next Army Chief’s son serves in the Air Force
New Delhi, Apr 19: Lt Gen Manoj C Pande, who has been appointed the 29th Chief of the Army Staff, hails from Nagpur and members of his family are connected with the defence forces, while his academician-father retired from the Nagpur university and the mother worked in the All India Radio.
Lt Gen Pande will succeed General MM Naravane, whose tenure ends on April 30.
Currently serving as the Vice Chief of the Army Staff, he will become the first commander from the Corps of Engineers to take charge of the 1.3-million-strong force as the position has been held so far by officers from infantry, artillery and armoured regiments.
Col Abhay Patwardhan (retd), who has met Lt Gen Pande a couple of times in Nagpur, told PTI on Monday that the latter did his initial schooling from the city and has a lot of acquaintances in Nagpur.
He described Lt Gen Pande, who was born on May 6, 1962, as a "very capable officer" who has the ability to become the Chief of Defence Staff (CDS) also, PTI reported.
A senior journalist, who knows his family, said Lt Gen Pande's father, C G Pande, lives in Nagpur.
C G Pande was a consulting psychotherapist and retired as the Head of the Department (Psychology) of the Nagpur university, while Lt Gen Pande's mother late Prema was a popular announcer and host with the All India Radio, he said.
Lt Gen Pande's youngest brother Sanket Pande also was in the Indian Army and retired as a Colonel.
His other brother, Ketan Pande, and his wife live abroad, the journalist said.
Lt Gen Pande's wife Archana is a homemaker, while son Akshay is an officer in the Indian Air Force (IAF), he added.