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J. F. R. Jacob

JFR Jacob.jpg
Birth name Jack Farj Rafael Jacob
Born 1924
Calcutta, Bengal Presidency, British India
Died (aged 92)
New Delhi, India
Allegiance  British India
Service/branch  India Army
Years of service 1942–1979
Rank Lieutenant General of the Indian Army.svg Lieutenant General
Commands held
  • IA Eastern Command.jpg Eastern Army

12 Infantry Division

  • Param Vishisht Seva Medal ribbon.svg Param Vishisht Seva Medal
  • Commendation of Merit
  • Friends of Liberation War Honour
Other work

Jacob Farj Rafael Jacob (14 June 1923 – 13 January 2016) was an Indian Army Lieutenant General. He was best known for the role he played in India's victory in the Indo-Pakistani War of 1971 and the Liberation of Bangladesh. Jacob, then a Major General, served as the Chief of Staff of the Indian Army's Eastern Command during the war. He also served in World War II and the Indo-Pakistani War of 1965. He was the Governor of Goa and Punjab. He was also the administrator of Chandigarh between November 1999 and November 2003.

Jacob was born in Calcutta (now Kolkata), Bengal Presidency, British India. His family were Baghdadi Jews from Iraq. Jacob, motivated by reports of the Holocaust of European Jews during World War II, enlisted in the British Indian Army in 1942. His father objected to his enlisting. He said in 2010, "I am proud to be a Jew, but am Indian through and through."

He was also positive about India's recent economic growth and the capabilities of the young Indian generation. He said:

As a country, we are at the threshold of an economic explosion and, hence, at this moment, empowerment means most to those who hold the key to the future. I talk of the younger generation. Sound economic and strategic planning will bring about this change. Unfortunately, since our prosperity comes in bursts, good governance, in the form of dedicated politicians and bureaucrats, is essential to usher any changes.

On 13 January 2016 around 8.30 am, Jacob died at New Delhi's Army Research & Referral Hospital due to pneumonia. He was laid to rest the following day in Delhi's Jewish cemetery on Humayun Road. His funeral was attended by India's Defence Minister, Information Minister, and foreign delegations.

Jacob was the author of these books:

  • Surrender at Dacca: Birth of a Nation
  • An Odyssey in War and Peace: An Autobiography Lt Gen. J.F.R. Jacob )

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