Describing Sam Manekshaw as one of India's greatest soldiers, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh said military historians will forever record the strategic brilliance and the inpirational leadership of the Field Marshal, who died early on Friday.
94-year-old Manekshaw was "without doubt one of India's greatest soldiers and a truly inspiring leader," he said in his condolence message.
Singh said Manekshaw, popularly called Sam Bahadur, had served the army with great distinction for over four decades beginning with the very first military engagement free India was dragged into in the mountains of Jammu and Kashmir.
"Sam Bahadur was the architect and the inspiring leader of the operation and the consequent military victory in what is now Bangladesh," he said.
The Prime Minister said "military historians will forever record the strategic brillaince and the inspirational leadership of Sam Bahadur".
Singh said the people and the government expressed their deepest admiration and their profound gratitude for Manekshaw's leadership as Chief of Army Staff by conferring on him the prestigious title of Field Marshal.
He has "inspired several generations of Indian soldiers and officers over the past half-a-century. I am sure his legacy will continue to live with us for years to come," the Prime Minister said, expressing his "deepest and heartfelt" condolences.