Who was the real 'Gabbar'

It was August 15, 1975 when the cult film 'Sholay' was released. Since then, it has been three decades but the multi-starrer continues to remain a classic. Who is that one character, you remember from 'Sholay'? 'Gabbar', is the most expected answer. The villanious 'Gabbar' played by Amjad Ali Khan is still seen as an iconic figure in the hearts of the people. However, only few know that a dreaded dacoit named Gabbar alias Gabra actually existed in Madhya Pradesh in the 1950s era.

Last Updated: Aug 14, 2015, 15:24 PM IST
Who was the real 'Gabbar'

New Delhi: It was August 15, 1975 when the cult film 'Sholay' was released. Since then, it has been three decades but the multi-starrer continues to remain a classic. Who is that one character, you remember from 'Sholay'? 'Gabbar', is the most expected answer. The villanious 'Gabbar' played by Amjad Ali Khan is still seen as an iconic figure in the hearts of the people. However, only few know that a dreaded dacoit named Gabbar alias Gabra actually existed in Madhya Pradesh in the 1950s era.

It is being said that Salim Khan- the legendary script writer had got the idea of Gabbar from this fearful dacoit. Salim, who along with Javed Akhtar has given the Bollywood many path-breaking scripts was aware of the dacoit as his father was with the Madhya Pradesh Police.

According to a report published by the BBC, the real Gabbar was born in 1926 in Dang village located in Gohad Tehsil of Bhind district in Madhya Pradesh.

In 1955, Gabbar Singh left the village and joined Kalyan Singh Gujjar's gang and subsequently formed his own.

The story of dacoit Gabbar is mentioned in KF Rustamji's diary, who was then the IG of Madhya Pradesh Police.

According to the details in the diary, Gabbar had instilled so much fear in the areas of Dholpur Bhind, Gwalior and Etawah that no one dared to leak any information regarding him.

Interestingly, this 'real' Gabbar was more of dreadful than the 'reel' one. Gabbar Singh had vowed to cut noses of 116 people as one 'tantrik' had advised him of doing so. The tantrik had told the dacoit that by doing so, he would remain safe from police.

In this particular era, the Madhya Pradesh's Chambal Valley was so tensed that even the then prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru was finding it hard to control the situation.

In 1959, the task of eliminating Gabbar was was given to MP Police officer Rajendra Prasad Modi.

Modi got the first hand information about Gabbar from a villager named Ramcharan and launched a massive police operation.

It is being said that a fierce encounter took place between the police force and the Gabbar's gang. According to the BBC report Gabbar was severely injured with grenades hurled by the police.

Rustamji, who earlier worked as special security officer to Nehru, wanted to present a unique gift to his PM.

As Gabbar was killed a day ahead of Nehru's birthday, Rustamji decided to present the news of Gabbar's death as a gift to the ex-prime minister. Do you fear Gabbar now?