Commodore Simon Mathai today assumed command of Indian Navy’s premier Gunnery and Missile Training Establishment INS Dronacharya, at Veli, Fort Kochi, today. A ceremonial handing/taking over parade was held at the Fort Kochi base to mark the occasion, a Defence press release said. The officer is an alumnus of the premier military feeder institution Rashtriya Indian Military College (RIMC), Dehradun and National Defence Academy, Khadakwasla, Pune. He was commissioned into the Indian Navy on July 1, 1990.
The officer is a graduate of Defence Services Staff College, Ooty in 2005, and has attended the Naval Higher Command course in 2012-13. Mathai, a native of Karuvelipadi, Kochi has held various command and staff appointments in his 27 years of service. The officer has also commanded IN Ships Chamak, Magar, Rana and Rajput. He was previously posted at Kochi as the Naval Officer-in-Charge (Kerala) in 2013-15, during which period, the Joint Operations Centre (JOC) for co-ordination of all agencies involved in coastal security was operationalised.
His staff appointments include Joint Director in Directorate of Staff Requirements at Naval Headquarters and ‘Command Gunnery Officer’ at Eastern Naval Command. He is a recipient of the Nao Sena Medal and the Chief of the Naval Staff Commendation in 1997 and 2003 respectively