Arup Raha

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Air Chief Marshal
Arup Raha
অরূপ রাহা
Arup Raha cropped.PNG
Arup Raha at the Golden Jubilee of Sainik School, Purulia on January 29, 2012.
Born 26 December 1954[1]
Baidyabati, West Bengal, India
Allegiance India India
Service/branch  Indian Air Force
Rank Air Chief Marshal of IAF.png Air Chief Marshal[2]
Commands held AOC-in-C of Western Air Command
AOC-in-C Central Air Command
47 Squadron IAF
Awards Param Vishisht Seva Medal Ribbon.jpg Param Vishist Seva Medal (PVSM)
Ati-Vishisht-Seva-Medal-ribbon.jpg Ati Vishist Seva Medal (AVSM)
Vayusena Medal Ribbon.jpg Vayusena Medal(VM)[3]

Air Chief Marshal Arup Raha (Bengali: অরূপ রাহা), PVSM, AVSM, VM, ADC is the current Chief of Air Staff of the Indian Air Force[2] He previously served as the Vice Chief of the Air Staff of the Indian Air Force.[4] Raha is a fighter pilot who has logged over 3,400 hours of flying experience.[5] Formerly he has been AOC-in-C of the Western Air Command.[3] and that of the Central Air Command.[5]

Early life and education[edit]

Arup was born on 26 December 1954 in the city of Baidyabati,an area under the Kolkata Metropolitan Development Authority which is in the Indian State of West Bengal. His father was a reputed doctor. Raha was educated at Sainik School Purulia (1970 batch).[6][7]

Military Training[edit]

Arup Raha was trained at the National Defence Academy, Khadakwasla, India, from July 1970 to June 1973, and at the time of graduating from NDA in June 1973, he was awarded the Gold Medal for being the best cadet of the 44th NDA course. Subsequently he did flying training on HT-2 and Kiran ( HJT-16 ) at the Air Force Academy, Hyderabad, before being commissioned into the Indian Air Force as a fighter pilot in Dec 1974.

Military career[edit]

Raha has commanded a MiG-29 fighter squadron and two frontline airbases along India's Western front. Raha has held many important staff appointments in India and abroad.
Following are some of the notable appointments held by Air Marshal Raha :

Chief of Air Staff
(from December 31, 2013 to present)
(Air Chief Marshal)

Vice Chief of Air Staff
(from July 1, 2013 to 31 Dec 2013 )
(Air Marshal)

Air Officer Commanding-in-Chief of the Western Air Command of the IAF
(Air Marshal) ( From June 1, 2012 to June 30, 2013 )

Air Officer Commanding-in-Chief of the Central Air Command
(Air Marshal) (From 02 Nov 2011 to 31 May 2012 )

Senior Air Staff Officer at Western Air Command ( till 01 Nov 2011 )
(Air Vice-Marshal)

Directing Staff at Flying Instructors’ School, Tambaram, Chennai.

Commanding Officer of No: 47 Squadron IAF Black Archers (8 June 1992 to 5 June 1994 )

Raha has flown an array of combat and trainer aircraft including the MiG-21 and MiG-29.[8] As on April 2, 2010, he had 3,400 hours of flying experience.[5]

Appointment as Chief of IAF[edit]

On 29 October 2013 Government of India appointed Air Marshal Raha, who was the Vice Chief of Air Staff at that time, to be the next Chief of the Air Staff of the India Air Force. He took the charge on 31 December 2013, when the Air Chief Marshal NAK Browne retired.[9]

Flight information[edit]

Awards and decorations[edit]

Param Vishisht Seva Medal.jpg Param Vishisht Seva Medal
Ati Vishisht Seva Medal.jpeg Ati Vishisht Seva Medal
Vayusena Medal.jpg Vayusena Medal


  1. ^ "Arup Raha takes over as IAF chief - The Times of India". The Times Of India. 2013-12-31. 
  2. ^ a b "Arup Raha takes over as IAF chief". Chennai, India: The Hindu. 2013-12-31. Retrieved 31 December 2013. 
  3. ^ a b "Central Air Command". Retrieved 2012-06-23. 
  4. ^ "Air Marshal Arup Raha to take over as IAF Vice Chief". Retrieved 2013-07-03. 
  5. ^ a b c d "Arup Raha takes over as senior Air Staff Officer at WAC - Times Of India". 2010-04-02. Retrieved 2012-06-23. 
  6. ^
  7. ^ Jayanta Gupta (January 26, 2012). "Sainik School in Purulia turns 50, Air Marshal to be chief guest - Times Of India". Retrieved 2012-06-23. 
  8. ^ a b "Press Information Bureau English Releases". 2011-11-02. Retrieved 2012-06-23. 
  9. ^ "Air Marshal Arup Raha named next IAF chief - The Times of India". The Times Of India. 
Military offices
Preceded by
Norman Anil Kumar Browne
Chief of the Air Staff (India)
2013 - current
Preceded by
Bikram Singh
Chairman of the Chiefs of Staff Committee
2014 - current