Port Blair. 20 October 2017. Indian Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman is on a two-day visit to Andaman & Nicobar Command. She was received at INS Utkrosh by Lieutenant Governor of Andaman and Nicobar Islands, Admiral (Retd) DK Joshi and Commander-in-Chief Andaman & Nicobar Command Vice Admiral Bimal Verma.
On arrival, she was accorded a Joint Services Guard of Honour by the troops of Andaman & Nicobar Command. Subsequently, during her visit to the Headquarters Andaman & Nicobar Command, the Raksha Mantri was given a comprehensive brief on the security environment and thrust areas of the command.
On the second day of her visit the Minister went on a windshield tour of the defence facilities at Port Blair. She was accompanied by Commander-in-Chief, Andaman & Nicobar Command Vice Admiral Bimal Verma.
Subsequently, she visited Car Nicobar where she paid homage to the personnel and families who lost their lives during the Tsunami in 2004 after which visited the Japanese Wells and interacted with the troops prior departing.
The Andaman and Nicobar Command is the only Tri-service theater command of the Indian Armed Forces, based at Port Blair in the Andaman and Nicobar Islands, a Union Territory of India. It was created in 2001 to safeguard India’s strategic interests in Southeast Asia and the Strait of Malacca by increasing rapid deployment of military assets in the region.
As of 2014, the command includes 15 ships of the Indian Navy, two Navy Sea bases, four Air Force and Naval Air bases and two Army brigades.The Andaman and Nicobar Command is India’s first and only joint tri-service command, with rotating three-star Commanders-in-Chief from the Army, Navy and Air Force reporting directly to the Chairman of the Chiefs of Staff Committee.
The Andaman and Nicobar Command is commanded by a three-star officer (rank of Lieutenant General of the Indian Army or equivalent) who reports directly to the Chairman of the Chiefs of Staff Committee in New Delhi. The Chief of Staff of the command is a two-star officer; each component (sea, land, air) is commanded by a one-star officer.
Vice Admiral (later Admiral and CNS) Arun Prakash was the first Commander–in–Chief of the Andaman & Nicobar Command (CINCAN). The command is currently headed by Vice Admiral Bimal Verma, who took command on 29 February 2016, and is the 13th commander.