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Gorkha tribute to Manekshaw

Posted by Ramesh Khati on June 27, 2009

Sam Manekshaw

Sam Manekshaw

Shillong, June 26: One of Field Marshal Sam Manekshaw’s favourite lines, many in the defence forces say, was his own: “If someone says that he is happy to die, he should be either a liar or a Gorkha.”

Today, on the eve of the general’s first death anniversary, a bust of Sam Hormusji Framji Jamshedji Manekshaw was unveiled, fittingly, at the 58 Gorkha Training Centre in Happy Valley here.

It was a tribute from the Gorkha soldiers who fondly called the Field Marshal “Sam Bahadur”.

The bust, unveiled by Maj. Gen. K.S. Sethi, general-officer-commanding, 101 Area, has been designed by reputed Calcutta-based sculptor Gautam Pal.

In August last year, a small park, christened Sam Bahadur Memorial Park, was opened at the Gorkha Training Centre which Manekshaw frequented since 1976. In addition to the park, a museum set up in 1980 to honour Sam Bahadur has uniforms worn by him, trophies, scrolls of Padma Bhushan and Padma Vibhushan and photographs.

The Manekshaw Museum also has the original certificates of the Legion of Merit conferred on him by the US on April 14, 1970, and the Shiromani Award handed over by President Zail Singh on January 20, 1987.

“He was a man of unflinching moral courage and leadership skills par excellence. His life will always be a source of inspiration, not only for the soldier community of 58 Gorkha Training Centre, but also for the entire nation,” Maj. Gen. Sethi said, after unveiling the bust.

Sam Bahadur was appointed the first colonel of 8 Gorkha Rifles Regiment at Dehradun on May 24, 1953. Later its headquarters was shifted to Shillong.

When the 5 Gorkha Rifles Regiment was set up in Shillong, the headquarters of both the regiments was together known as 58 Gorkha Training Centre.

Field Marshal Sam Bahadur was the lifelong Honorary Colonel of 8 Gorkha Regiment.

Source: The Telegraph


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