The highly-anticipated movie Sam Bahadur has finally released in theatres today. Vicky Kaushal plays the titular role of Field Marshal Sam Manekshaw, and the film delves into the life and times of the military legend. Directed by Meghna Gulzar, the film also stars Fatima Sana Shaikh and Sanya Malhotra. We know you are excited to watch the movie in cinemas, but before you do, let’s take a look at who Field Marshall Sam Manekshaw was!
Who was Sam Bahadur? Here’s what you need to know before watching Vicky Kaushal starrer
Sam Hormusji Framji Jamshedji Manekshaw, also known as Sam Bahadur, was the first Indian Army officer who was promoted to the rank of Field Marshal. He was born on 3rd April, 1914, in a Parsi family in Amritsar, British India. He joined the Indian Military Academy, Dehradun, in 1932, and was commissioned into the 4/12 Frontier Force Regiment in 1934. He was sent to Lahore for 1 year to serve an attachment period with a British unit, before he rejoined his parent unit in 1936.
Sam Bahadur was fluent in multiple languages- Punjabi, Hindi, Urdu, English, Gujarati. In 1938, he was also qualified as a Higher Standard army interpreter in Pashto. He married Silloo Bode in 1939, and they had two daughters- Sherry and Maya.
Sam Manekshaw’s military career
Sam Manekshaw had a distinguished military career that spanned four decades, and five wars, beginning with service in the British Indian Army in World War II. He battled courageously in five wars which included World War II, Indo-Pak War (1965), Indo-Pak Partition War (1947), Sino-Indian War (1962) and the War of Bangladesh Liberation (1971).
In 1969, Sam Manekshaw was appointed as the 8th Chief of Staff of the Indian Army. During his tenure, he developed the Indian Army into an efficient instrument of war. It was under his leadership that the Indian forces carried out successful campaigns against Pakistan during the Indo-Pakistani War of 1971. He showcased his acumen in planning and administration while handling the issues relating to Partition in 1947.
While Sam Mankshaw was set to retire in June 1972, his term was extended by six months. He was promoted to the rank of field marshal on 1st January, 1973, in recognition of outstanding services to the Armed Forces of the nation.
He was known to have cheated death on a few occasions during his tenure. He was conferred with the Padma Vibhushan, Padma Bhushan and a Military Cross for gallantry (World War II). He retired from active service on 15th January 1973, post a distinguished career of nearly 40 years. Post-retirement, he settled with his wife Silloo in Coonoor.
He passed away in June 2008, at the age of 94. He died of complications from pneumonia. Reportedly, his last words were ‘I’m okay.”
Vicky Kaushal on playing Sam Bahadur
Meanwhile, Vicky Kaushal opened up on playing Sam Manekshaw in Sam Bahadur. He said, “Playing the role of Field Marshal Sam Manekshaw is an immense responsibility and a huge honour. We’ve poured our hearts into bringing to life one of India’s great heroes on screen. I’m humbled to be a part of this project that is so inspiring.”
Sam Bahadur, directed by Meghna Gulzar released today on 1st December, 2023, on the silver screens.
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