Admiral Sunil Lanba, Chief of the Naval Staff will relinquish command of the Indian Navy as the 23rd CNS on completion of his tenure and retirement from service today, after over four decades of distinguished service.
An alumnus of the National Defence Academy, Khadakwasla, Defence Services Staff College, Wellington, College of Defence Management, Secunderabad and Royal College of Defence Studies, London, the Admiral’s career has been enriched with vast experience at sea as well as in operational, training and tri-services appointments. Prior to being elevated to the Flag rank, Admiral Lanba was deeply engaged with professional training, shaping future leadership and skilling of the officers of the Indian Armed Forces.
On elevation to the Flag rank, Admiral Lanba held several significant assignments in the Navy including Chief of Staff, Southern Naval Command, Flag Officer Sea Training and Flag Officer Commanding Maharashtra and Gujarat Naval Area. On promotion to the rank of Vice Admiral, he was the Chief of Staff, Eastern Naval Command, Commandant, National Defence College and the Vice Chief of the Naval Staff. Prior to taking over as Chief of the Naval Staff on 31 May 2016, Admiral Lanba was the Flag Officer Commanding-in-Chief of the Southern and Western Naval Commands. He took over as the Chairman, Chiefs of Staff Committee on 01 January 2017.
During his tenure as the CNS, Admiral Lanba set the tone for several transitions in operational, training and organisational philosophy of the Indian Navy. The Mission Based Deployments introduced in June 2017 transformed the operational philosophy to deploying mission-ready ships and aircraft along critical sea lanes of communications and choke points. These deployed ships are always ready to meet any eventuality across the spectrum of operations ranging from acts of maritime terrorism and piracy to HADR. The Mission Based Deployments enabled Indian Naval units to be the first responder in crisis situations and showcased Indian Navy as the main instrument in India becoming a Net Security Provider in the Indian Ocean Region.
Admiral Lanba has also steered implementation of the new transition cycle which facilitated improvement of the overall readiness of ships and submarines in undertaking operational tasking and Mission Based Deployments. This transition saw considerable improvement in combat efficiency and crew proficiency of ships, resulting in overall improvement of Op Logistics, spares management and forecasting refit planning and expenditure management.
The Admiral’s tenure saw Indian Navy’s Foreign Cooperation initiatives becoming a ‘key driver’ to propel ‘India’s Defence Diplomacy’ to greater heights in the Indo-Pacific. Accordingly, as part of IN’s Capacity Building initiatives, the IN facilitated provision of a record number of naval assets to various IOR littorals and has also established itself as the preferred destination for niche training in the field of submarine, aviation and asymmetric warfare.