– Vijay Khurana
Dr Rakesh Chopra is an MSc from Madras University and an MBA from B school, JBIMS, in Mumbai. After an MPhil from Mumbai University was thereafter awarded PhD for his thesis on ‘The Strategic Significance of Oil and Gas for the Security of India’. Also an amateur historian, he is a member of the Indian History Congress in recognition of his being the Vice Chairman of the Maritime History Society of South India.
He studied at Bishop Cotton School, Shimla, and on graduation joined the National Defence Academy for a military career. After serving in the Indian Navy for 38 years he retired in the rank of Rear Admiral in 2006 and took up appointment on the faculty of XLRI Jamshedpur, as Professor of Strategy.
Dr Rakesh Chopra is also a Senior Visiting Research Fellow with the “Oxford Leverhulme Programme on the Changing Character of War” at Oxford University. He is a founder member and on the Board of Directors of a think tank “Peace Operations Institute” in Washington DC, USA.
Dr R Chopra has also had a commendable academic and instructional career in the military. An alumnus of the Defence Services Staff College, he has also been on the faculty as Directing Staff. He was a founding member and Chief Instructor of the College of Naval Warfare at Karanja, Mumbai, and the Chief Instructor of the Navigation & Direction School where officers specialize in the planning and conduct of maritime operations.
A specialist in Navigation & Direction and diving, he has navigated several ships, controlled aircraft from the carrier and commanded three major IN Ships. He has been the Additional Director General of the National Cadet Corps, Flag Officer Offshore Defence (FODAG), Flag Officer Sea Training (FOST) and the Assistant Chief of the Integrated Defence Staff (IDS), Joint Operations, Information Warfare and Weapon Systems. He has been involved with strategy and policy formulation and implementation as also human resource development for senior positions in the military.
He commanded a ship in the 1971 Indo Pak war in the Eastern Theatre and was a member of the Indian Peace Keeping Force (IPKF) in Sri Lanka in 1988 where he was awarded ‘Mention in Dispatches’ for gallantry. Subsequently he was awarded the Vishisht Seva Medal by the President of India for exemplary service.
He is a yachtsman of national stature; a qualified International Race Officer, a national judge in sailing and was the Hon Treasurer of the Yachting Association of India. He is an avid golfer. He is married and has two sons.