India: On November 21, 1916, in the Shahjahanpur, Uttar Pradesh, village of Khajuri, Jadunath Singh was born into a Rathore Rajput family. He was the child of farmer Birbal Singh Rathore and Jamuna Kanwar. With six brothers and a sister, he was the third of eight children.
Due to his family's financial situation, Singh was only able to complete the fourth year of a local school's curriculum in his village. He assisted his family with farming chores on the family farm for the majority of his formative years. He took up wrestling as a hobby, eventually winning the village wrestling championship. He was referred to as "Hanuman Bhagat Bal Brahmachari" because of his morals and wellbeing. This happened after Hanuman, a Hindu god who was perpetually single.
On November 21, 1941, at the Fatehgarh Regimental Center, Singh enlisted in the British Indian Army's 7th Rajput Regiment. Singh was assigned to the 1st Battalion of the regiment after completing his training. The battalion was sent to the Arakan Province in late 1942 as part of the Burma campaign, where they fought the Japanese. The battalion was a member of the 14th Indian Infantry Division's 47th Indian Infantry Brigade. In an effort to retake Akyab Island, it engaged in combat operations near the Mayu Range in late 1942 and the beginning of 1943, moving up the Mayu Peninsula towards Donbaik. In December 1942, the Rajputs were halted near the collection of villages known as Kondan, but the advance sluggishly continued in the direction of Donbaik. The brigade's attack came to an end there, and the 55th Indian Infantry Brigade later relieved them in the early days of February 1943. The Japanese launched a counterattack in early April. Around Indan, the 47th Brigade was cut off and eventually dispersed into smaller units to fight their way back to the Allied lines. The brigade's survivors made their way back to India. The 2nd Indian Infantry Brigade entrusted the defence of the Andaman and Nicobar Islands to Singh's battalion in 1945. The Japanese forces had a portion of the islands under their control when they capitulated on October 7, 1945. Singh received a promotion to the position of Naik after returning to India (corporal). The 7th Rajput Regiment joined the Indian Army after the division. Singh continued to serve in the 1st Battalion of the newly raised Indian regiment.
Battle of Taindhar
The Defence Committee of the Indian Cabinet instructed the Army Headquarters to launch a military response in October 1947 in response to a raiding campaign by Pakistani forces in Jammu and Kashmir. As instructed, the Army prepared a number of operations to chase the raiders away. In one such operation, the Rajput Regiment, which was attached to the 50th Para Brigade, was given the order to secure Naushahra and set up a base at Jhangar in mid-November.
In the Naushahra Sector, Jhangar, a strategically advantageous position, was taken by the Pakistanis on December 24 as a result of bad weather. This gave them control over the communication lines between Mirpur and Poonch (town)Poonch and gave them a base from which to launch attacks on Naushahra. The Indian Army conducted several operations in the region north-west of Naushahra the following month to halt further Pakistani force advances. The 50th Para Brigade's commanding officer, Brigadier Mohammad Usman, had taken the necessary precautions to defend against the anticipated assault. Soldiers were sent out in small formations to monitor potential enemy approaches. Tain Dhar, located to the north of Naushahra, was one such approach under Singh's command. At 6:40 a.m. IST on February 6, 1948, Pakistani forces opened fire on pickets from the battalion patrolling along the Tain Dhar ridge. Both sides fired shots at each other. The foggy early morning darkness aided the attackers in creeping up to the pickets. Soon, men stationed on the Tain Dhar ridge noticed a large number of Pakistani soldiers approaching them. Singh oversaw the nine men who manned the forward post of the second picket at Tain Dhar. Singh and his unit were able to repel three separate attempts by Pakistani forces to take their position. By the end of the third wave, 24 of the 27 men at the post had been killed or severely injured. Singh, a section commander at the post, demonstrated "exemplary" leadership and continued to motivate his men until he succumbed to his wounds. This proved to be a pivotal moment in the battle of Naushahra. Meanwhile, Brigadier Usman dispatched a company of the Rajput Regiment's 3rd (Para) Battalion to reinforce Tain Dhar. Recapturing these positions would have been impossible without Singh engaging Pakistani troops for an extended period of time.
On 6 February 1948, No 27373 Naik Jadunath Singh was in command of a forward section post at No 2 Picquet on Taindhar, which bore the full brunt of the enemy attack. The small post was manned by nine men against overwhelming odds. To overcome this post, the enemy launched an attack in successive waves and with great ferocity. In a furious attack, the first wave swept up to the post. With great valour and superb leadership qualities, Naik Jadunath Singh used the small force at his disposal so effectively that the enemy fled in complete confusion. Four of his men were wounded, but Naik Jaunath Singh demonstrated his leadership qualities once more by reorganising the battered force under him in preparation for another onslaught. His coolness and courage were of such calibre that the men rallied and prepared for the second attack, which arrived with greater zeal and in greater numbers than the previous one. Despite being vastly outnumbered, this post resisted under the gallant leadership of Naik Jadunath Singh. All were wounded, and despite being wounded in the right arm, Naik Jadunath Singh personally took over the Bren gun from the wounded Bren gunner. The enemy was right on the walls of the post, but Naik Jadunath Singh once again demonstrated exceptional ability and valour in action. He inspired his men to fight by his complete disregard for his personal safety and example of coolness and courage. His fire was so devastating that what appeared to be an impending defeat became a victory, and the enemy retreated in chaos, leaving the dead and wounded on the ground. Naik Jadunath Singh saved the post from the second assault with this act of supreme heroism and outstanding example of leadership and determination. By this point, all of the men in the post had died. The enemy launched his third and final attack with unwavering determination to capture this post. Naik Jadunath Singh, now wounded, prepared to fight for the third time on his own. He emerged from the sangar with great courage and determination, and finally, with the Sten gun, made a most magnificent single-handed charge on the advancing enemy, who fled in confusion, completely taken by surprise. Naik Jadunath Singh, on the other hand, died valiantly in his third and final charge, when two bullets struck him in the head and chest. Thus, charging alone at the advancing enemy, this Non-Commissioned Officer displayed the highest gallantry and self-sacrifice, saving his section, nay, his entire picquet, from being overrun by the enemy at the most critical stage of the battle for Nushera's defence.
Singh was posthumously awarded the Param Vir Chakra, India's highest military decoration, for his actions on February 6, 1948.