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Monday, November 26, 2012

How Sam Maneckshaw became Army Chief

At that time the front runner for the post of the army chief on the retirement of general Choudhry was General Harbaksh Singh. Maneckshaw was unfortunately no where in the picture as he had no battle experience of commanding a corps or a command in actual war. It appears Ms Gandhi had indicated that General Harbaksh would be the army chief. It appears that Mr. JRD Tata the top Industrialist and a Parsi intervened at that time.  He supported Maneckshaw as the army chief on the ground that he was a Parsi. Ms Gandhi not averse to playing Empress readily agreed. She over ruled her Defense Minister Swaran Singh and annouthenced Sam Maneckshaw a Parsi as Army Chief. Thus a battle hardened soldier like Harbaksh was sidelined in favor of a man who had not commanded a single division in actual war. Perhaps she thought that it would be a good idea to get the support of JRD in the long run. That is how Lieutenant general Maneckshaw arbaksh accepted the decision gracefully and faded away.