Captain Ishar Singh
30 December 1895|
|Died||2 December 1963
|Battles/wars||First World War
Second World War
Order of British India
Sardar Bahadur Ishar Singh VC, OBI (30 December 1895 – 2 December 1963) was a soldier in the British Indian Army and a recipient of the Victoria Cross, the highest award for gallantry in the face of the enemy that can be awarded to British and Commonwealth forces. Born at Nenwan, in Punjab, he was the first Sikh to receive the Victoria Cross.
Ishar Singh was 25 years old, and a sepoy in the 28th Punjabis, Indian Army during the Waziristan Campaign when, on 10 April 1921, near Haidari Kach he undertook the actions which led to the award of the VC. The citation was published in a supplement to the London Gazette of 25 November 1921:
|“||War Office, 25th November, 1921.
His Majesty the KING has been graciously pleased to approve of the award of the Victoria Cross to the undermentioned: —
No. 1012 Sepoy Ishar Singh, 28th Punjabis, Indian Army
For most conspicuous bravery and devotion to duty on the 10th April, 1921, near Haidari Kach (Waziristan). When the convoy protection troops were attacked, this Sepoy was No. l of a Lewis Gun- Section. Early in the action he received a very severe gunshot wound in the chest, and fell beside his Lewis gun. Hand-to-hand fighting having commenced, the British officer, Indian officer, and all the Havildars of his company were either killed or wounded, and his Lewis gun was seized by the enemy.
Calling up two other men he got up, charged the enemy, recovered the Lewis gun, and, although, bleeding profusely, again got the gun into action.
When his Jemadar arrived he took the gun from Sepoy Ishar Singh, and ordered him to go back and have his wound dressed.
Instead of doing this the Sepoy went to the medical officer, and was of great assistance in pointing out where the wounded were, and in carrying water to them. He made innumerable journeys to the river and back for this purpose. On one occasion, when the enemy fire was very heavy, he took the rifle of a wounded man and helped to keep down the fire. On another occasion he stood in front of the medical officer who was dressing, a wounded man, thus shielding him with his body. It was over three hours before he finally submitted to be evacuated, being then too weak from loss of blood to object.
His gallantry and devotion to duty were beyond praise. His conduct inspired all who saw him.
He later achieved the rank of captain, and served in the Second World War. In addition to the Victoria Cross, he was awarded the prestigious Order of British India, First Class, which carried with it the title of "Sardar Bahadur." 
- Ashcroft, pp. 99 and 101.
- Ashcroft, p. 99.
- The London Gazette: . 25 November 1921. Retrieved 11 December 2007.