Recipient of the Old Sherwoodians' Millennium
Award for Outstanding Achievement conferred
during the Reunion on 14.10.2000.
Marshall S.H.F.J. Manekshaw, M.C. affectionately
known as 'Sam' was commissioned from the first
course to pass out of the Indian Military college
(now known as the Indian Military Academy),
Dehradun, in 1934 . He was commissioned in the
9th Frontier Force Rifles. During the Second
World War, he saw service with his battalion in
Burma and was severely injured in action. He was
awarded the Military Cross for his devotion to
duty and outstanding bravery. In 1947, after
independence and the Partition of India, Sam
Manekshaw was transferred to the 8th Gorkha
Rifles. During his illustrious career, he has
held a number of important staff appointments. He
was the Commandant of the Infantry School, Mhow,
and Defence Services Staff College, Wellington.
He was selected to command the Eastern Command as
it had a challenging task to fulfill as a result
of the Chinese aggression. He was appointed the
Chief of the Army Staff in 1968. As chief, he was
the architect of the 1971 Indo - Pak war in which
he led the Indian Army to its success.
MARSHAL SAM MANEKSHAW AS CHIEFGUEST IN
THE CENTENARY YEAR, 1969
Grace, the Metropolitan of India, My Lord Bishop
of Lucknow, Mr. Principal, ladies and young
gentlemen of Sherwood:
evening when my A.D.C. told me that I would have
to speak here, I was horrified. I thought the
Principal had asked me to come and join the
celebrations; I did not realize he wanted me to
sing for my supper! Believe me, as I stand here,
I am terrified. Those near me can almost hear my
knees knocking and my teeth chattering. For eight
years in Sherwood, I was at the receiving end.
is customary on these occasions for the guest
speaker to give a learned discourse or advice to
young gentlemen. It is not my fault that,
although I received my early education in
Sherwood, I am not learned. Sir, I am fit neither
to give you a learned discourse nor advice, I
really want to tell you what Sherwood has done
has taken me to my present position. First and
foremost, I learned to live alone and
independently. I learned to fight - from the time
I got up in the morning till the time I went to
bed. When I went down to wash I could not find my
towel, and while I was looking for my towel
somebody pinched my soap. This, my young
gentlemen, happened for eight years. I am rather
disappointed as I look at you carefully (I shall
put on my glasses) to see so few scared faces. In
my time, the guest speaker saw nothing but black
eyes. I fought, and it stood me in good stead
during the war in Burma, where we came up against
else did I learn from Sherwood? During the war in
Burma I went without food for many days. I was
hungry. I withstood this and said to myself,
"After all I went through 8 years of hunger
in Sherwood". I was hungry in the morning; I
was hungry in the afternoon, hungry when I went
to bed at night. Does a similar situation prevail
now? I learnt in school to hate my enemies. How?
....Thanks to St. Joseph 's next door and when we
played them on the Flats. From the corner of my
eye I see His Grace, the metropolitan, and the
Bishop frowning. "You should love your
neighbour", is what they say. So we should,
though I can almost hear the boys say,
"except St. Joseph's."
it is a great privilege and a great honour to be
able to come back to Sherwood after thirty years,
to come back as a chief guest, to come back to
address you boys who will grow up to be fine
gentlemen. I thank you very much for having given
me this privilege. I am sorry I cannot tell you
anything about Mr. Binns, I have heard a great
deal about him, but he was here after my time.
May I hope that some day, some of you, will join
the armed forces to rise to high positions.
Gleanings from 'The Sherwoodian Times'
is with a great sense of satisfaction that we
note that the first Field-Marshal in the Indian
army was Sam Manekshaw, a tremendous honour for
the school indeed.
much can be gleaned about this future leader of
men from old Sherwoodian magazine. We know that
he had two brothers, Jehangir and Jemi, who also
studied in Sherwood. They came to us from
seemed to be more literary than sporting and we
give here a delightful poem which gives early
warning of that famous humour that is so
characteristic of him (and which sometimes got
him into trouble!).
and his two brothers seemed to have a penchant
for Maths. This talent is referred to in the poem
'The Naughty Ninth'
" Now Manekshaw S. we are to add
Who, no doubt, is a jolly lad,
He's keen on Mathematics, too,
Our Trig. sums for us he does do."
Jemi in Sherwood 'Seniors'
"J. Manek's working hard, too:
To church he never comes.
'Tis thought he doth stay behind
To work out Algy sums."
follow the fortunes of Sam's meteoric rise from
this first report. "We are constantly
hearing of the success of many Old Boys of whom
we would especially mention Sam Manekshaw who
passed out with the first batch from Indian
Military Academy in March.
we read of him cutting his teeth on his first job
"Congratulations to S.H.F.J. Manekshaw on
passing out among the first batch of cadets from
the I.M.A, Dehradun. He has been temporarily
attached to the 2nd Battalion, Royal Scouts, at
Lahore before eventually joining a unit in the
1946, there is a passing reference to his having
been wounded in the war (IInd World War). In
addition, he also picked up an M.C. for gallantry
and leadership on the Burma front. He became
the centre of news in the December 1962 magazine
which reads like a fanfare of trumpets, "We
congratulate Maj. Gen. S. Manekshaw (1923-1930)
on his promotion to the rank of Lt. General. He
has been in charge of the Defence Services Staff
College, Wellington, for the last three years. He
has a distinguished fighting record and is
reputed to be an authority on modern strategy and
won the M.C. on the Burma Front during World War
II. He was the Director of Military operations at
Army Headquarters during the Kashmir fighting
he served as Director of Military Training at
Army Headquarters. In 1985 he was appointed
Commandment of the Military School at Mhow.
General Manekshaw was commissioned in 1934.
Manekshaw M.C. (1923 - 1930) who is at present
commanding a corps in the Eastern Sector is being
appointed G.O.C in Central Western Command.
of the college who were here at the time of the
Centenary Celebrations (1969) can count
themselves fortunate in having General Manekshaw
as Chief Guest. His speech, short and witty,
captured the collective hearts of the school
because he touched lightly on those ingredients
that are an intrinsic part of college life. We
give it below, leaving it to serve as a
conclusion to the brief story of a man whom
Sherwood is very proud to own as one of her sons