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'Manekshaw pride of Bangladesh'

Indian Field Marshal Sam Manekshaw is the "pride" of Bangladesh without whom "things could have been different" for the country's Liberation war in 1971.

world Updated: Jun 29, 2008 18:09 IST

Indian Field Marshal Sam Manekshaw was the "pride" of Bangladesh without whom "things could have been different" for the country's Liberation war in 1971, an influential daily said on Sunday.

"He was committed to our cause. Had he not been around in 1971, things could well have been different for us. He was our true friend and ally and will always be our pride," The Daily Star said.

Paying tribute to the former Indian Army chief, who led the Liberation war, the daily said that Manekshaw was a "source of inspiration" in Bangladesh's "time of greatest need".

Expressing deep shock at the death of Field Marshal Manekshaw, Bangladesh's Liberation War Museum has opened a condolence book at Segun Bagicha in Dhaka to facilitate people to pay their tributes to the chief of Bangladesh-India Joint Forces in 1971.

"The name of Sam Manekshaw is inseparable in the history of Bangladesh and his contribution to the War of Liberation would be ever remembered by the nation," the Liberation War Museum said in a statement.

The Bangladeshi daily said "for the people of Bangladesh, Manekshaw remains, and will remain, a shining symbol of friendship". His "unparalleled commitment to the cause of justice for Bengalis" culminated in the liberation of Bangladesh.

The top leaders of Bangladesh earlier paid glowing tributes to the iconic Field Marshal, recalling his "signal contribution" to the country.

"The people and the government of Bangladesh will always recall with warm gratitude his signal contribution to our War of Liberation and his association with a glorious epoch in the history of Bangladesh's evolution," Foreign Adviser Iftekhar Ahmed Chowdhury said. Army chief General Moeen U Ahmed said the "successful leadership" of Manekshaw had helped Bangladesh achieve a quick victory in 1971.