SIKH HERITAGE AWARDS GALA 2008: CHIEF GUEST
His Excellency General (Retd) J. J. Singh - Governor of Arunachal Pradesh, India
General JJ Singh, a third generation officer was commissioned into 9 MARATHA LI on 02 Aug 1964. He served as the General Officer Commanding-in-Chief of the prestigious Western Command prior to his taking over the appointment of Chief of Army Staff with effect from 31 Jan 05. During his tenure General JJ Singh, refined operational planning by co-opting the battle winning role of revolution in military affairs and provided focussed direction based on the ‘Doctrine of the Indian Army’ having earlier been its architect, while in command of the Army Training Command.
On taking over the second largest Army of the world General JJ Singh has given operations in J&K and the Northeast a discernable shift with renewed emphasis on a humane approach by the army to tackle the problem through the strategy of “An iron fist and a velvet glove’’. He has overseen the implementation of Indian Army doctrine for conventional operations. The General as Chief of the Army Staff also has been instrumental in conceptualising and implementation of the Sub Conventional Doctrine. The Doctrine encapsulates the wisdom and philosophy acquired by Indian Army over almost five decades of experience in fighting such warfare. There has also been a thrust on the seamless integration of information technology in the Army through implementation of network centric warfare and revolution in military affairs.
The General has seen a variety of first hand combat experience in his over 12 years of field experience. He has the distinction of being decorated with AVSM and VSM while in command of troops and in Military Operations Directorate. He has also been awarded the PVSM on 26 Jan 04 and was nominated as honorary ADC to the President of India on February 1, 2004. The General has led troops from the front in battle – a trait which saw him conducting many successful operations as also being seriously wounded in anti-terrorist operations in J&K as a Brigade Commander for which he received the War Wound Medal, and was commended by the COAS. He was nominated for the prestigious National Defence Course in 1993 in recognition of his outstanding performance in this operational tenure.
General JJ Singh has a wide experience of appointments in the Army, which includes serving as the Additional Director General in the Military Operations Directorate during the Kargil Conflict and Operational Logistics Directorate. He has done all the distinguished professional courses to include Defence Services Staff Course, Senior Command, Higher Command and National Defence College Course. He has also had the privilege of being the first Indian Defence Attache in Algeria. He has the experience of commanding an elite Strike Corps during Exercise Poorna Vijay and Operation Parakram.
A linguist who speaks fluent French and some Arabic, General Singh is widely considered to be a thinking and perceptive soldier who is a thorough professional. He was Colonel of the Maratha Light Infantry Regiment, Brigade of the Guards and 61 Cavalry. On retirement he has been appointed as Honorary Colonel of the Maratha Light Infantry. The General has evinced great interest in shooting and sports and given added impetus to the ‘Mission Olympics’ project. The General was the President of Indian Golf Union and the Indian Polo Association. He was also the President of prestigious Delhi Gymkhana Club.
Recognising the distinguished contribution made by Gen JJ Singh towards India’s Security and Nation building ‘The Sikh Forum UK’ a renowned World Sikh body awarded him with coveted ‘Sikh of the Year 2007’ at London (UK) on 28 Oct 2007.
The General was appointed as Governor of the State of Arunachal Pradesh on 24 Jan 2008 by Her Excellency the President of India. He was sworn in as Governor of Arunachal Pradesh on 27 Jan 2008. Arunachal Pradesh is strategically located in the North East of India, and has common borders with China, Myanmar and Bhutan.
Immediately after taking over as the Governor of Arunachal Pradesh His Excellency Gen J J Singh hosted Hon’ble Prime Minister of India on 31st Jan, 08 during his maiden visit to Arunachal Pradesh. The Govt of India has announced a massive development programme for Arunachal Pradesh which includes major projects related to road, rail and air connectivity power and many other infrastructural projects amounting to 15 – 20,000 crores. The Governor is taking keen interest and monitoring all the developmental activities of the State, as well as taking care of his special constitutional obligation with regard to maintenance of law and order in the State. In fact, with his presence the pace of development has multiplied manifold.
It is a matter of great honour and pride both for the Indian Army, as also for His Excellency General JJ Singh, for being awarded the prestigious ‘Life Time Achievement Award’ on 26 Apr 08 by the Mother Teresa’s International & Millennium Awards Committee, for being ‘The protector of the country and a social worker’.