Former vice chief of army staff Lieutenant General Sarath Chand joined the BJP today.

The newest member of the BJP was commissioned into the Garhwal Rifles in June 1979 and retired as vice chief of Indian Army on the 1st of June last year.

As the Vice chief, he had criticized the BJP government for not allotting enough resources to the armed forces. This was during a parliamentary committee on Defence. Since then he has said that the military allocation was a minor setback to the modernization of the army.

“In today”s global scenario, the country needs a strong leadership. I was inspired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi”s leadership that”s why I am joining BJP,” said Chand. He also added that PM Modi and the BJP has done a lot for soldiers.

“I was commissioned into the Garhwal Rifles and spent a good portion of my official career in Uttarakhand. I am now leaving to meet Chief Minister T.S Rawat and others, who were instrumental in me joining the BJP. I am not joining electoral politics and after my brief stay in Uttarakhand, I will return to Kochi, where I reside,” he told the news agency IANS.

He hails from Kottarakkara in Kerala, and has been awarded the Vishisht Seva Medal, the Ati Vishisht Seva Medal, the Uttam Yudh Seva Medal and the Param Vishisht Seva Medal.