NEW DELHI: Northern Army commander Lieutenant General Upendra Dwivedi is set to take charge as the army’s vice chief on February 15 and he will be replacing Lieutenant General MV Suchindra Kumar.
The two generals will swap positions, with Kumar taking over the Udhampur-based Northern Command as its General Officer Commanding-in-Chief next week, the officials informed on condition of anonymity.
Dwivedi seems to be next-in line for the post of Army chief as he will be the senior-most general when General Manoj Pande retires on May 31, 2024.
He happens to be an alumnus of the Sainik School, Rewa, National Defence Academy, and Indian Military Academy.
The Lieutenant General assumed charge of the operationally critical Northern Command in February 2022.
His previous tenures included serving as the deputy chief in the Army Headquarters, the General Officer Commanding of the Yol-based HQs 9 Corps and director general of infantry.
In December 1984, he was inducted into the 18th Battalion of the Jammu and Kashmir Rifles.
Notably, the Northern Command is tasked with securing the country’s borders with Pakistan and China in the north, and serves as the epicentre for counter-terrorism operations in Jammu and Kashmir.
Meanwhile, Lieutenant General Kumar will take over the reigns of the Northern Command at a time when India and China finds itself embroiled in a long standing military standoff along the Line of Actual Control (LAC) in eastern Ladakh since May 2020.
The prospects of a full resolution of the border crisis through ongoing negotiations still seems distant in the current circumstances. General Pande, in January, said that the situation along LAC in the Ladakh sector is stable yet sensitive.
Despite four rounds of disengagement from Galwan Valley, Pangong Tso, Gogra (PP-17A) and Hot Springs (PP-15), the Indian and Chinese military still have tens of thousands of its troops and advanced weaponry deployed in the Ladakh theatre.
Both the sides have held multiple rounds of talks but the issues arising at Depsang and Demchok still persist.