Lt General Manoj Pande is Chief of Staff at Army’s Southern Command Headquarters

Source: The Hitavada      Date: 02 Sep 2017 09:30:03















Staff Reporter,

He has made us feel great, says the decorated officer’s father C G Pande

Lt Gen Manoj Pande is a Nagpurian who has served in many important positions

Lt Gen Manoj Pande, a Nagpurian, has taken over the charge of Chief of Staff at Headquarters Southern Command, Pune, from Lt Gen R J Noronha, PVSM, AVSM**, SM, ADC. A decorated officer, Lt Gen Pande commanded a Mountain Division in high-altitude area, and also tenanted the coveted appointment of Additional Director General in Military Operations Directorate at Army Headquarters. 

An officer decorated with Ati Vishisht Seva Medal (AVSM) and Vishisht Seva Medal (VSM), Lt Gen Manoj Pande is son of C G Pande, Consulting Psychotherapist and retired Head of the Department of Psychology, Nagpur University, and late Prema Pande, who was a popular announcer and host with All India Radio. Though a decorated officer, Lt Gen Manoj Pande stays away from media glare.

Lt Gen Manoj Pande’s youngest brother Sanket also was in the Indian Army and retired as a Colonel. He now stays in Pune. The General Officer’s younger brother Ketan and his wife are in Brunei. Lt Gen Pande’s wife Archana is a home-maker, and son Flt Lt Akshay is in the Indian Air Force as a pilot currently posted in Chandigarh.

When the news came out about Lt Gen Manoj Pande taking over as Chief of Staff at Headquarters Southern Command of the Indian Army, his father C G Pande who stays in Nagpur said, “I am feeling proud. He has made us feel great. Had his mother been alive, she would have been very happy.” The pride and joy both made his face radiant.
A proud father, C G Pande recalled that when a young

Manoj was undergoing jungle training, he used to write inland letters to parents. “In jungle training, they do not get food or water and still they have to serve. In a letter, he had written about finding and cooking tubers, getting trained to catch, cook, and eat snake. Then, I used to read out his letters to his mother. But, considering her sensibility, we did not read out the ‘snake letter’ to her. Manoj has worked very hard and has earned a great respect. But, he is a sensitive person too,” he added.

On the first day of assuming the appointment, Lt Gen Manoj Pande paid homage to the martyrs of the Armed Forces at the National War Memorial at Pune by laying a wreath. An alumni of National Defence Academy, Lt Gen Manoj Pande was commissioned into Bombay Sappers in 1982 and later commanded an Engineer Regiment in Jammu and Kashmir. The General Officer is a graduate of the Staff College, Camberley (United Kingdom) and has attended the Higher Command and National Defence College courses.

In his 35 years of distinguished military service, the General Officer has tenanted many challenging command and staff appointments. He commanded an Engineer Brigade as part of Strike Corps, an Infantry Brigade along Line of Control in Jammu and Kashmir and a Mountain Division in the high altitude. His staff tenures include exposure at Brigade, Division and Command Headquarters level. 

As a Lieutenant Colonel, he was a part of United Nations mission in Ethiopia and Eritrea. He has also tenanted the coveted appointment of Additional Director General in Military Operations Directorate at Army Headquarters. For his illustrious service, he has been conferred with the award of AVSM, VSM, the Chief of Army Staff Commendation and twice with General Officer Commanding-in-Chief Commendation.