Sam Hormusji Framji Jamshedji Manekshaw


Indian children born in this century may not be familiar with Sam Bahadur, but every child of India was once familiar with this name. Sam Bahadur was a very respected name in every household of India.

My biggest desire in childhood was to join the army, Seeing this indomitable desire of mine, my father gave me some books of stories related to the Indian Army and commanders to read, perhaps it was from here that I got acquainted with Sam and his heroic deeds.

Later, when I was a student of International Relations, I read a lot about India-Pakistan relations and the India-Pakistan war, during this time I came to know many new things related to Sam.

What Is In A Name.

popular name : SAM MANEKSHAW


OFFICIAL NAME : Sam Hormusji Framji Jamshedji Manekshaw

NOTE : Another name of Sam Manekshaw that I have heard many times is Shyam.

Shyam is a popular name in the rural areas of North India, due to which the residents here also call Sam Manekshaw as Shyam.



 “If a man says he is not afraid of dying, he is either lying or is a Gurkha“.


Manek Shaw was associated with the Gurkha Regiment of the Indian Army and Gurkha people are also called Bahadur because of their bravery, hence this name was given to Manek Shaw with love and respect by the soldiers of his army.
Manekshaw liked this name the most among all his names.

Sam Bahadur had jokingly said in an interview that his full name is so long that if he told it, the scheduled time of the interview would be spent in telling his full name.

His full name was Sam Hormusji Framji Jamshedji Manekshaw .

Life introduction

Sam Bahadur was born in a Zoroastrian family. The Parsi Zoroastrian community is originally native to Iran.

Before the arrival of Islam, Zoroastrian religion was prevalent in ancient Iran.
In the seventh century, the Arabs defeated Iran and tortured the Zoroastrian followers there and forcibly converted them into Islam. Many Zarathustra’s came and settled in India to save their lives.

Is it a coincidence that a boy born in the same Zoroastrian religion became the commander who caused the terrible defeat of the world’s first Muslim country and divided that country into two parts?

1914 Born in Amritsar.

1933 Joins the Indian Military Academy.

1934 Commissioned into the army.

1947 Pakistan invades Kashmir. Is colonel in charge of operations.

1962 Sent to NEFA to check further Chinese intrusion.

1965 Commander, East- ern Command during the Indo-Pak war.

1969 Appointed chief of the army staff.

1971 Indo-Pak war. Steers India to victory. and Bangladesh is created.

1973 Given the rank of Field Marshal.

Died : 27 June 2008

Sam Bahadur was the Chief of Army Staff of the Indian Army during the India-Pakistan War of 1971. He had a long and highly successful military career spanning four decades and five wars, beginning with the Second World War.

In 1971, Pakistan suffered a massive defeat and the Indian Army, with its indomitable courage, defeated Pakistan and divided it into two parts and a new country, Bangladesh, was born.

This defeat of Pakistan, the militant Islamic country of South Asia, broke the back of Pakistan and till date it has not been able to come out of the shock of this defeat.


The reason for Sam Bahadur’s immense popularity in India was not only his dream-like military success but his candor, foresight and leadership qualities made him a god-like man.

After centuries of slavery, the defeat by China had broken the self-respect of the people of India. Once again there were talks about whether the Hindu race is a defeated race. Sam proved this notion to be baseless and helped India overcome adverse circumstances.

Certainly, this victory awakened the spirit of courage and faith in the hearts of Indians and made them believe that they are not inferior to anyone in any field.

Some interesting stories related to the life of Sam Bahadur

@This one is about the Second World War. In those days, India was under Britain, hence many Indian soldiers were fighting on behalf of Britain.
A fierce battle was going on between the soldiers of India and Japan in Myanmar for the capture of a bridge.

The leadership of the Indian army was in the hands of a young company commander.
Then the young commander was seriously injured in machine gun firing by Japanese soldiers.
Instead of leaving his troops leaderless, the young officer decided to remain on the battlefield until his last breath.

After a few hours the Indians succeeded in capturing the bridge. Considering the success of the Indian commander and his critical condition, it was decided to immediately honor him with the Military Cross because the Military Cross was not awarded posthumously.
Who knew that this commander would not only survive but would also prepare the background for India’s biggest victory in the future.

Today we all are familiar with that young commander, he was Sam Bahadur.

@In 1971, Sam Bahadur showed the suggestions of all the politicians to the dustbin and said in clear words that the ultimate goal is to win the war and practice politics through it.

Many politicians disagreed with his views.
Initially Prime Minister Mrs. Indira Gandhi was also a bit skeptical but when the Indian Army started cutting the Pakistani Army as easily as butter, everyone became convinced of Sam.

@There is an incident when Sam found that the Defense Secretary had objected to some of his observations. Sam immediately met the Defense Minister and the Prime Minister and without any hesitation said that if he felt that the Defense Secretary knew more, then him There is no need for opinion.
Result: The Defense Secretary was transferred to another department the next day.

Sam Bahadur was against the red tape of bureaucrats and their unnecessary interference in the affairs of the army.
Similarly, he was against politicians bringing politics into military matters.

@When one lakh soldiers of Pakistan surrendered before the Indian Army, he himself was not present on this occasion. He said that this honor should go to his junior army commander.

Thus, we find that at present there is almost no political interference in the Indian Army and the bureaucratic interference is also very less, the credit for this goes largely to Sam.

Author: nitinsingh

Postgraduate in International relations. Experience in writing in various journals, from BBC WORLD NEWS SERVICE to India's one of the oldest hindi daily. I like to write on international relations, religion, religious conflict. Social media has bridged the distance between writing and reading. Now writing is not just the expression of one's own thought, but also knowing the expression of people on various subject.


  1. A most astounding individual.

    You know I probably saw this man being interviewed on television when I was very young.

    I always had an interest in Geopolitics and International Relations since I was very young.

    My mother said when I was 3, I would run around the house talking about the War In Vietnam (which I apparently pronounced Bretnam).

    I don’t remember doing that.

    When I was 10, I watched the Canadian National News where it talked about the East Pakistan Civil War.

    Then it became the India-Pakistan War.

    One night I watched as they were interviewing an Indian Army man and I remember him saying, “We will win.”

    That night I went to bed and dreamed with the maps of West Pakistan, India and East Pakistan (now Bangladesh) circling in my head and when I got up and listened to the radio the next morning, they said West Pakistan had surrendered.

    No doubt that Indian Army man was Sam Bahadur.

    1. Thank you very much for taking time out of your busy schedule to read my post.

      Your knowledge about India always amazes me, I often get new information from your comments.

      From your comment about the 1971 India-Pakistan war, it came to light that your memory power is also amazing. You remember the incident of your childhood as it is.

Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this: