Juba, Jul. 8: Indian commitment to peace-keeping is always appreciated on an international level. Many Indian decorated officers lead forces in UN Peacekeeping Missions. Furthering this tradition, Army officer Lieutenant General Shailesh Sadashiv Tinaikar assumes charge as force commander of the UN Mission in South Sudan.
After assuming the charge, Lieutenant General Shailesh Sadashiv Tinaikar, who will be leading about 15,000 troops, has encouraged peacekeepers to achieve their mandate and overcome difficulties with patience and perseverance.
Tinaikar arrived in South Sudan capital Juba on July 6 and assumed charge as the UNMISS Force Commander.
On this occasion, Lit. Gen Shailesh Tinaikar said, “I am confident that with your full support, we will be able to achieve the mandate that has been assigned to us. I know the difficulties of the mandate but I don't think anything is so difficult that you cannot achieve it with effort, patience, and perseverance”.
UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres had announced the appointment of 57-year-old Tinaikar in May.
As per UNMISS tweeted, “34 years of distinguished service with the Indian armed forces, Tinaikar will take responsibility for leading almost 15,000 troops as they work to protect civilians, provide a safe environment for displaced families returning to their homes and to support the fragile peace process as South Sudan recovers from a six-year Civil War”.
Tinaikar has had a long and distinguished career with the Indian Army spanning over three decades. He graduated from the Indian Military Academy in 1983. Before arriving in South Sudan, he had been Commandant of The Infantry School since July 2018. He previously served as the Additional Director General of Military Operations at Army Headquarters from 2017 to 2018. From 2012 to 2017, he commanded a division, a recruit training center and a brigade, among other appointments within the Indian Armed Forces.
He has been awarded the Sena Medal and the Vishisht Seva Medal for Distinguished Service.
From 1996 to 1997, he served in the United Nations Angola Verification Mission III, and from 2008 to 2009, in the United Nations Mission in Sudan.
He holds a Master of Philosophy (M Phil) in Defence and Strategic Studies from The University of Madras, India, awarded in December 2014.
As of March 2019, India is the second highest troop contributor to UNMISS, with 2,337 troops deployed with the mission. In addition, India contributes 22 police personnel to UNMISS.