New Delhi: Indian Army chief General Bipin Rawat is set to become India's first Chief of Defence Staff (CDS). The Army chief was named the CDS a day before he was set to retire from the service after completing a full three-year term as the Chief of Army Staff.

General Rawat will be the first officer to hold the post of the Chief of Defence Staff. The CDS will function as a single-point advisor to the government on matters related to tri-services.

On December 31, 2016, General Rawat was appointed the Chief of Army Staff. The chief, however, will continue his service now as the Chief of Defence Staff.

The idea of a Chief of Defence Staff was mooted decades ago. While it remained on the back burner for long, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on August 15, 2019, announced that the post of CDS was being created. 

It was not only a bold decision, but it could be considered as one of India's most significant military reforms. 

What is Chief of Defence Staff:

The Chief of Defence Staff is a four-star general, who would also be the single point military advisor to the government. The CDS would function as a military advisor to the Prime Minister-led Nuclear Command authority apart from having a direct command of the trip-service organisations that handles space and cyberspace.

The CDS would also have an appropriate mix of both civilians, and military officers and the CDS would facilitate the restructuring of the military commands for optimal utilisation of resources by bringing about seamless collaboration in the operations. The CDS would also have a second role and would be the permanent chairman of the chiefs of staff committee.