Vice Admiral Ram Dass Katari
- Category: Chiefs of Naval Staff
- Published: Wednesday, 29 October 2008 00:00
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Subsequent to World War II, Vice Admiral Katari held important sea commands and was responsible for clearing the mines that had been laid near the Andaman & Nicobar Islands. Later, command of the naval forces that took part in the operation off the Kathiawar coast devolved upon him when he commanded INS Kistna. In the same ship, he also took the main body of ratings to the U.K. for India's first cruiser - INS Delhi and since the time she was taken over in July 1948 up to early 1949, he served as the commander of the Indian Navy's flagship.
He was promoted to the rank of Captain in December 1948, about two months before he took over as Chief of Personnel at Naval HQ. For about a year from December 1951, Vice Admiral Katari was the Commanding Officer of a Destroyer Squadron and Commanding Officer of INS Rajput, the senior ship of the Squadron. He attended a course at the Imperial Defence College in the U.K. in 1953. After his return to India he took over as the Deputy Chief of Naval Staff (DCNS) early in 1954 and was constituted with the rank of Commodore. In the same year, he officiated as the Commander-in Chief of the Indian Navy, and was the first Indian Officer to do so.
In March 1956 he was promoted to the rank of Rear Admiral. After handing over to his successor at Naval HQ he went abroad on a study tour, returning to India in August 1956. Later in October of the same year, he took over as the Flag Officer Commanding the Fleet, a post which was until then held by British Officers. He was promoted to the rank of Vice Admiral in April 1958 when he assumed the command of Indian Navy.