Ghulam Muhammad Baksh more popularly knows as The Great Gama or Gama Pehlwan.
The Gama Pehlwan was born in British Subcontinent 22 may 1878 now Amritsar Punjab India.
Born in a Kashmiri family clan Gama spent his early days in the village of Jabbowal in Amritsar British India. Gama family was known in whole India for producing world-class wrestlers.
Gama’s father Muhammad Aziz Baksh died when he was six then brought up by his maternal grandfather Nun also known as Nun Pehlwan.A fter the death of his grandfather and trainer Nun his uncle Ida who was also a wrestler brought him up under his training.
Gama Pehlwan participated in a strength competition held at Jodhpur which included wrestlers from all around India.More than four hundred wrestlers participated and Gama secured 15th position and was declared winner due to Gama’s young age.After knowing his skills and strength Maharaja Datia took Gama under his training.
Gama used to have a monstrous diet of 7.5 litres of milk 1.5 pounds of almond paste which helped him gaining muscle mass.
At the age of seventeen Gama challenged all India wrestling champion Raheem Baksh Sultan Wala who was also Kashmiri wrestler of Gujranwala, Punjab, British India now Punjab, Pakistan. the bout continued for several hours and ended up in a draw.Gama got his lifetime fame after this match and then Gama defeated all Indian wrestlers expect Raheem Baksh.
Gama then went London to challenge international wrestlers but no one came forward then Gama announced that he will pay money if he gets defeated.An American wrestler accepted his challenged and got defeated.
In 1922 he was presented with a silver mace by prince os Wales.
Then Gama faced Stanislaus Zbyszko and defeated him in the match by not allowing him to stand at all and Zbyszko were angered by his act.
After returning from England he again faced Raheen Baksh Sultaniwala this time Gama defeated Raheem Baksh Sultaniwala after a long battle.Whenever in his life Gama was asked about his toughest opponent he said “Raheen Baksh Sultani Wala”.
In 1927 Zybszko again challenged him and bites the dust yet again.After he was declared the undisputed champion.The Nizam of Hyderabad invited to fight his personal wrestlers Gama defeated them all then Nizam sent him to face Beeman Singh Yadav and the match was tied.
Gama came to Pakistan after partition in 1947 and was unable to find any competitor and then he retired in 1952 and trained his nephew Bholu Pehlwan who remained champion in all Pakistan for more than 20 years.
Gama died on 23 May 1960 after a long period of illness Gama was given land by the government for financial support but still struggled to pay for his treatment of heart and asthma.Then D.G Birla who was an industrialist donated him 2000 rupees and 300 monthly pensions.
The government of Pakistan also granted him a monthly pension for his services to the Nation.
A hanging disc is placed at National Institute of Sports (NIS) in Patiala.
Another surprising fact is that Kalsoom Nawaz Sharif the wife of Mian Nawaz Sharif is Gama’s Granddaughter.
Gama Pehlwan is Featured by
Author: Iftikhar Younis Peerzada