May 31, 2016: Admiral Sunil Lanba, PVSM, AVSM, ADC has assumed Command of the Indian Navy, as the 23rd Chief of the Naval Staff today, May 31, 2016.
A Navigation and Direction specialist, Admiral Lanba served as the Navigation and Operations Officer onboard numerous ships in both the Eastern and Western Fleets. His nearly four decades of experience includes tenure at sea, ashore at various Headquarters, Operational and Training establishments as well as tri-services institutions. His sea tenure includes command of INS Kakinada, a specialised Mine Counter Measure Vessel, INS Himgiri, the indigenous Leander class Frigate, INS Ranvijay, a Kashin class destroyer and INS Mumbai, the indigenous Delhi class destroyer. He has also been the Executive Officer of the aircraft carrier, INS Viraat and the Fleet Operations Officer of the Western Fleet.
An alumnus of the National Defence Academy, Khadakwasla, Defence Services Staff College, Wellington, College of Defence Management, Secundrabad and Royal College of Defence Studies, London, Admiral Lanba’s career has been enriched with his vast experience at sea, training, operational and tri-services tour of duty both within India and with international navies.
As a Training Officer at the National Defence Academy, Directing Staff at the College of Defence Management and as the Commandant of the National Defence College, Admiral Lanba has been deeply engaged with professional training, shaping future leadership and skilling of the officers of the Indian armed forces. Whilst being part of the Flag Officer Sea Training Organisation at the Local Workup Team (West), he sharpened the combat skills of the Western Naval Command.
On elevation to flag rank, Admiral Lanba has held several significant capacity and capability assignments for the Navy. He was responsible for transformation in training methodology for the future Indian Navy as the Chief of Staff, Southern Naval Command. The Admiral thereafter, took on the mantle of the Flag Officer Sea Training, where he ushered changes to enhance battle effectiveness of ships and rationalised combat manning onboard. Later, he took over command of the vital Maharashtra and Gujarat Naval Area as the Flag Officer Commanding Maharashtra and Gujarat Naval Area and implemented significant coastal security initiatives along with multiagency co-ordination mechanisms that have since ensured safe seas and coastal areas.
On promotion as Vice Admiral, he has been the Chief of Staff, Eastern Naval Command, and Commandant of the National Defence College. In his capacity as the Vice Chief of Naval Staff, the Admiral streamlined the frame work for transformation of Indian Navy’s combat capabilities and infrastructure development as well as tri-services initiatives towards enhancing integration and jointness.
Prior to taking over as the Chief of the Naval Staff, Admiral Lanba has been the Flag Officer Commanding-in-Chief of the Southern and Western Naval Commands, wherein he provided impetus to training and skill development, synergising combat operations, coastal security, safety and infrastructure development along the Western seaboard and in the Lakshadweep and Minicoy islands.
The Admiral is a recipient of Param Vishist Seva Medal and Ati Vishist Seva Medal for meritorious service and is also the Honorary Aide-de-Camp to the President of India.
Admiral Sunil Lanba is married to Reena. The couple is blessed with Moneesha and Sukriti, their daughters and Adhiraj, their son.
The new Navy Chief Admiral Sunil Lanba with the outgoing Navy Chief Admiral R.K. Dhowan
Chief of the Naval Staff Admiral Sunil Lanba inspecting the Guard of Honour
Outgoing Naval Chief Admiral R.K. Dhowan giving his farewell speech for the media
Chief of the Naval Staff Admiral Sunil Lanba's first interaction with the media
The new Navy Chief with his family
Photo Credit: PRO (Navy), SP Guide Pubns