Also, he was the Air Officer Commanding-in-Chief of South Western Air Command and has also been the Vice Chief of the Air Staff.
The outgoing Chairman Chiefs of Staff Committee (COSC) and Chief of the Naval Staff Admiral Sunil Lanba handed over the baton of chairman to the Chief of the Air Staff Air Chief Marshal Birender Singh Dhanoa.
Dhanoa will be the Chairman COSC with effect from May 31, following the relinquishment of charge by Admiral Sunil Lanba upon superannuation after a distinguished career spanning over four decades. A supporter of Tri-Services Jointmanship, Lanba was instrumental in harmonizing the efforts of the three Services in a number of Tri-Services issues.
The air chief who has taken over as COSC is an alumnus of Rashtriya Indian Military College and the National Defence Academy, and was commissioned in the Flying Branch of Indian Air Force (IAF) in June 1978. An experienced fighter pilot and a qualified CAT ‘A’ Flying Instructor; he has over 3000 hours of flying experience to his credit. He has mainly flown the MiG-21 aircraft and has flying experience across the entire spectrum of fighter aircraft of the IAF.
According to the Ministry of Defence (MoD), he was the Commanding Officer of a frontline ground attack fighter squadron during the Kargil War in 1999. Dhanoa has held many critical operational and staff assignments.
These include command of a frontline fighter Base, Director Fighter Operations and War planning at Western Air Command, Chief Instructor (Air) at DSSC, Assistant Chief of the Air Staff (Intelligence) at Air HQ and Senior Air Staff officer of two operational Commands. Also, he was the Air Officer Commanding-in-Chief of South Western Air Command and has also been the Vice Chief of the Air Staff.