Naushera

About Battle of Naushera

"Lion of Noushera" Brigadier Mohammad Usman, MVC (15 July 1912 – 3 July 1948) As a Muslim, Usman became a symbol of India's "inclusive secularism"In 1947 Pakistan sent tribal irregulars into the princely state of Jammu and Kashmir in an attempt to capture it and accede it to Pakistan. Usman, then commanding the 77th Parachute Brigade, was sent to command the 50th Parachute Brigade, which was deployed at Jhangar in December 1947. On 25 December 1947, with the odds stacked heavily against the brigade, Pakistani forces captured Jhangar. In January–February 1948 Usman repulsed fierce attacks on Nowshera and Jhangar, both highly strategic locations in Jammu and Kashmir. During the defence of Nowshera against overwhelming odds and numbers, Indian forces inflicted around 2000 casualties on the Pakistanis.

His defence earned him the nickname "Lion of Naushera". Pakistani forces then announced a sum of Rs 50,000 as a prize for his head. Unaffected by praise and congratulations, Usman continued to sleep on a mat laid on the floor as he had vowed that he would not sleep on a bed till he recaptured Jhangar, from where he had had to withdraw in late 1947. It was during this defence of Jhangar that Usman was martyred on July 3, 1948, by an enemy 25-pounder shell. He was 12 days short of his 36th birthday. His last words were "I am dying but let not the territory we were fighting for fall for the enemy”. For his inspiring leadership and great courage, he was awarded the Maha Vir Chakra posthumously.