Sunday, July 31, 2011

Indian Air Force gets 23rd Chief

Posted by- Neelam Mathews
July 31, 2011

Air Marshal Norman Anil Kumar Browne, who has logged 3,100 hours has taken over as Chief of the Indian Air Force from Air Chief Marshal P.V. Naik.

In his address to the Air Force, Air Chief Marshal Browne said: “The IAF is well poised on the path of transforming itself into a potent strategic force”.

Outlining his vision statement for the IAF, he said: “While induction of the state of the art equipment and systems would lead to a major upgradation of our combat potential, our biggest strength, ‘Our People’ must receive our highest attention.” “In whatever capacity you serve in the Indian Air Force, you remain our most valuable asset”, he added.

“While change is the hallmark of growth and progress, the biggest challenge facing us in the coming years, is to manage this fast paced change effectively, without compromising on high operational standards. Operating across a broad spectrum of equipment vintage, would test our innovativeness and capabilities. .............”.

Born in Allahabad on Dec 15, 1951, Air Chief Marshal Browne was commissioned into the Fighter stream of Indian Air Force on 24 June 1972. He has had a varied operational experience of flying Hunters, all variants of MiG-21s, Jaguars and SU-30s.

He was a member of the initial core team which trained on the Jaguar aircraft in the UK  and went on to command a premier Jaguar strike squadron subsequently. He is a Fighter Combat Leader and a graduate of the Air Command and Staff College, Alabama, USA. He has had instructional tenures at the premiere flying establishment – Tactics and Air Combat Development Establishment (TACDE) – and the tri-services Defence Services Staff College (DSSC), Wellington.

In a career spanning 39 years, he has held various operational and staff appointments that include – Joint Director at Air War Strategy Cell at Air Headquarters, Chief Operations Officer and Air Officer Commanding of a SU-30 base, Air-I at New Delhi based Western Air Command (WAC) and Assistant Chief of the Air Staff (Intelligence) at Air Headquarters. He was also responsible for establishing the Indian Defense Wing in Tel Aviv, Israel in Apr 1997, where he served as the Defense Attache till July 2000. From March 2007 to  May 2009 he functioned as the Deputy Chief of the Air Staff (DCAS) at Air Headquarters and was responsible for IAF’s major Modernization Programs.

Before taking over as the Vice Chief of the Air Staff (VCAS) at Air Headquarters in January, he was the AOC-in-C of Western Air Command, under whose command and personal supervision, the first ever landing of an AN-32 (fixed wing aircraft) took place at Nyoma, advance Landing Ground (ALG), located at an altitude of 13,300 feet on 18 September 2009.

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