General Vijay Kumar Singh, PVSM, AVSM, YSM, ADC (born 10 May 1951) is an Indian politician and a retired four-star general in the Indian Army. Since May 26, 2014; he has worked as the Minister of State for External Affairs in the NDA-led Government of India. He briefly worked as the Minister of State (Independent Charge) for Development of the North-Eastern Region in the Government, a portfolio that was later assumed by Jitendra Singh.
In the tenure of his military career, Singh served as the 24th Chief of the Army Staff from 2010 to 2012. He became the first working Indian military Chief of Staff to take the Government of India to court, with regard to a dispute over his date of birth and subsequent retirement.
Early life and family
Vijay Kumar Singh was born in Bapora village, Bhiwani district, Haryana. His father was a Colonel in the Indian Army and grandfather a Junior Commissioned Officer. Vijay was educated at Birla Public School, Pilani, Jhunjhunu, Rajasthan. He is also an alumnus of National Defence Academy (India).
After his retirement from the military, Singh showed support for the anti-corruption movement. He was noticed on the stage in August 2012 at the Ramlila Maidan in New Delhi, where Ramdev was fasting in protest of alleged black money and corruption. He was reported to have explained that “It is shocking but true that over two lakh farmers have committed suicide since 1995. The problems of farmers will have to take the forefront in this movement as the government has turned a blind eye to their woes.” Around that time he also compared the movement, whose principal figurehead was Anna Hazare, to that of the Bihar Movement that had been led by Jayaprakash Narayan in 1975. He explained that “When I evaluate the country’s present condition, it is similar to that of 1975. Jayaprakash Narayan had then said Vacate the throne, common people are coming. He felt then that corruption is the major reason for all problems … the situation in the country is the same today”. Singh led an agitation with Yoga Guru Ramdev on 23 December 2012, at Jantar Mantar, New Delhi, on the 2012 Delhi gang-rape case.
Singh came in the Bharatiya Janata Party on 1 March 2014. He won the Ghaziabad (Lok Sabha constituency) seat in the 2014 Indian general election, defeating Raj Babbar of the Indian National Congress by a margin of 567,260 votes.