Jacob-Farj-Rafael “JFR” Jacob was born in 1923 and died on January 13, 2016.
He was an Indian Army Lieutenant General.
Jacob was best known for the role he played in India’s victory in the Indo-Pakistan War of 1971 and the Liberation of Bangladesh.
After which he became a Major General, served as the Chief of Staff of the Indian Army’s Eastern Command during the war.
Throughout his 36-year career in the army, he also fought in World War II and the Indo-Pakistan War of 1965.
He later served as the Governor of the Indian states of Goa and Punjab.Jacob was born in Calcutta (now Kolkata), Bengal Presidency, British India, in 1923.
His family were Baghdadi Jews originally from Iraq, they settled in Calcutta in the mid 18th century.
The family were “a highly religious Jewish family.
J. F. R. Jacob father Elias Emanuel, was a very affluent businessman.
Following his father becoming sick, Jacob was sent at the age of nine to Victoria School, a boarding school in Kurseong near Darjeeling. From then on, he went home only on school holidays.
He sort and saw of the Holocaust of European Jews during World War II, enlisted in the British Indian Army in 1942.
J. F. R. Jacob father objected to his enlisting.
He himself had said in 2012, “I am proud to be a Jew, but am Indian through and through.”
In 1942, he graduated from Officer’s Training School Mhow and was posted to northern Iraq in anticipation of a possible German attempt to seize the oil fields of Kirkuk.
towards the end of the 1943 war, his unit fought in the Burma Campaign against the Japanese Empire.
During the wake of Japan’s defeat, he was assigned to Sumatra
He attended and graduated from artillery schools in England and the United States, specializing in advanced artillery and missiles, after world war II, he then rejoined the Indian army.
He was promoted to Major General in 1967.
Then, in 1969, Jacob was appointed Chief of Staff.
Following the establishment of diplomatic relations between India and Israel, Jacob has paid many visits to Israel. Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin invited him to attend the Jerusalem 3,000 celebrations.
After one visit, J.F.R contributed items of Judaica from his parents’ home to the Museum of Babylonian Jewry in Or Yehuda.
J. F. R. Jacob home in New Delhi has for years been a pilgrimage site for Israeli diplomats, researchers, and security officers.
J. F. R. Jacob passed away at 92 yrs old due to pneumonia.