Col V. N. Thapar is the father of Capt Vijyant Thapar, VrC, who was a fourth-generation army officer. At the early age of fifteen, he was selected for the National Defence Academy and commissioned on 12 December 1962 in the Maratha Light Infantry. He commanded a battalion of the Jammu and Kashmir Rifles. He was part of the 1965 War and Bangladesh War, and has operated in counter-insurgency operations. He is an alumnus of the prestigious Defense Services, Staff College, Wellington. He has written for media publications and is a motivational speaker at various forums, universities, colleges and schools.