Sam Bahadur Movie: The film ‘Sam Bahadur‘ based on the country’s first Field Marshal Sam Manekshaw is being released in theaters on Friday. Going against his father, Manekshaw enrolled in the Indian Military Academy in 1932. He had to join the war at a young age.
These days, Sam Manekshaw’s name is being discussed a lot across the country. The film ‘Sam Bahadur’ made on India’s first Field Marshal Sam Manekshaw is being released in theaters on Friday. In the period drama directed by Meghna Gulzar, Vicky plays the lead role of Manekshaw, the army officer who defeated Pakistan in 1971. Apart from Vicky Kaushal, actors like Sanya Malhotra, Fatima Sana Shaikh, and Mohammad Zeeshan Ayyub will also be seen in important roles in this film.
Let us know who is Sam Manekshaw. What was the role of the country’s first Field Marshal in the 1971 war?
Dreamed of becoming a soldier since childhood
Sam Manekshaw was born on 3 April 1914 in Amritsar district of Punjab. His father Hormasji Manekshaw was a doctor. His full name was Sam Hormuzji Franmji Jamsetji Manekshaw, but friends, wife, grandson, and his officers or subordinates either called him Sam or ‘Sam Bahadur’.
The former army officer did his early schooling at Nainital in Uttarakhand and then completed his medical education at Hindu Sabha College. Going against his father, Manekshaw enrolled in the Indian Military Academy in 1932 and two years later joined the 4/12 Frontier Force Regiment. He had to join the war at a young age.
Seven bullets hit the intestines, liver, and kidneys in World War II
Sam first got famous in the year 1942. During the Second World War, a Japanese soldier fired seven bullets from his machine gun into his intestines, liver, and kidneys on the Burmese front. His biographer Major General VK Singh told in an interview, ‘His commander Major General Cowan took off his Military Cross at that very moment and placed it on his chest because the Military Cross was not given to a dead soldier.’
When Manekshaw was injured, orders were given that all the wounded should be left in that position because if they were brought back, the speed of the retreating battalion would be slowed down. But his orderly Subedar Sher Singh carried him on his shoulder and brought him back.
Sam’s condition was so bad that the doctors did not consider it appropriate to waste their time on him. Then Subedar Sher Singh pointed his loaded rifle toward the doctors and said, ‘We have carried our officer on our shoulders while fighting the Japanese. We would not want him to die in front of us because you did not treat him. You treat them otherwise I will open fire on you.
The doctor reluctantly removed the bullets lodged in his body and cut off the damaged part of his intestine. Amazingly Sam survived. First, he was taken to Mandalay, then to Rangoon, and then back to India. In the year 1946, Lieutenant Colonel Sam Manekshaw was posted at Army Headquarters, Delhi.
Told Indira – ‘You cannot enter the operation room…’
After the war with China in 1962, Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru and Defense Minister Yashwantrao Chavan visited the border areas. Prime Minister Nehru’s daughter Indira Gandhi was also with him. Sam’s ADC Brigadier Bahram Pantakhi writes in his book Sam Manekshaw- The Man and His Times, ‘Sam had told Indira that you could not enter the operation room because you had not taken the oath of secrecy. Indira felt bad about this but fortunately, the relationship between Indira and Manekshaw did not deteriorate because of this.
Indira was surprised by Sam’s answer before the 1971 war.
This story of the country’s first woman Prime Minister Indira Gandhi and Sam Manekshaw, recorded in the pages of history, is quite popular. In fact, during the 1971 war, Indira Gandhi wanted to attack Pakistan in March. However, Sam refused to do so as the Indian Army was unprepared for the attack. Indira Gandhi was also angry with this. Manekshaw asked, ‘Do you want to win the war or not?’ The answer was yes. On this Manekshaw said, ‘Give me six months. I guarantee that victory will be yours.
Indira Gandhi devoted some time to the training of the army and in 1971, under the leadership of Sam, the Indian Army fought with the Pakistani Army.
The first Indian general to receive the title of Field Marshal
Sam Manekshaw received many honors during his military career. At the age of 59, he was awarded the title of Field Marshal. He was the first Indian general to receive this honor. In 1972 he was awarded the Padma Vibhushan. A year later, in 1973, he retired from the post of Army Chief. After retirement, he moved to Wellington. He died in Wellington in 2008.