|Awarded by the President of Pakistan in the name of the Government of Pakistan|
|Type||Pakistan military medal with service ribbon
|Eligibility||Military personnel only|
|Awarded for||Acts of greatest heroism or of the most conspicuous courage in circumstances of extreme danger, and bravery of the highest order, or devotion to the country in the presence of the enemy on land, at sea or in the air.|
|Established||16 March 1957  (applied retrospectively from 14 August 1947)|
|First awarded||16 March 1957 – Indo-Pakistani War of 1947, Captain Muhammad Sarwar, Pakistan army|
|Last awarded||15 July 1999 – Kargil War, Havildar Lalak Jan, Pakistan army|
||This article may require copy editing for grammar, style, cohesion, tone, or spelling. (July 2015)|
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Nishan-e-Haider (Urdu: نشان حیدر) (abbreviated as "NH") is Pakistan's highest military gallantry award. "Nishan-e-Haider" literally means "Mark of the Lion" in the Urdu language. The word "Haider" is also the epithet of Hazrat Ali.
The Nishan-e-Haider can only be awarded to members of the Pakistan Armed Forces for the highest acts of extraordinary bravery in face of the enemy in air, land or sea. Although some consider it equivalent to the British Victoria Cross and the United States Medal of Honor, it is unique in that it has so far been awarded only posthumously. Its exclusivity can be gauged by the fact that, since Pakistan's independence in 1947, there have been only ten recipients. However, it must be noted that the United States and United Kingdom have been engaged in combat far more frequently and for much longer durations than Pakistan, so it is a moot comparison.
The Nishan-e-Haider was established by the Government of Pakistan and named after Hazrat Ali on 16 March 1957, which is the year in which Pakistan became a republic. However, it was applied retroactively from the date of Pakistan's independence on 14 August 1947. The Nishan-e-Haider is Pakistan's highest award and takes precedence over all military and civil awards. Of the ten Nishan-e-Haider recipients to date, nine have been from the Pakistan Army and one from the Pakistan Air Force.
The Nishan-e-Haider can be awarded to all ranks of the Pakistan Armed Forces for showing great feats of extraordinary courage in face of the enemy during war or active duty. As a matter of practice and precedent, it has only been awarded in circumstances where it has been established that a member of the Pakistan Armed Forces acted with extraordinary bravery and valor in face of the enemy notwithstanding the realization of a high risk to his life and, consequentially, sacrificing his life in the act.
The Nishan-e-Haider is manufactured by Pakistan Mint on order of the Ministry of Defence, Government of Pakistan. It is forged from captured enemy equipment and consists of 88% copper, 10% tin and 2% zinc.
Only ten Nishan-e-Haider medals have been awarded since Pakistan's independence on 14 August 1947. Nine were to members of the Pakistan Army, and one to a member of the Pakistan Air Force. Below is the list of Nishan-e-Haider recipients.
|S. No.||Name||Unit and service||Rank||Conflict||Date of Action|
|1||Raja Muhammad Sarwar Shaheed||2/1 Punjab Regiment, Pakistan Army||Captain||1948 Indo-Pak War||27 July 1948|
|2||Tufail Mohammad Shaheed||Punjab Regiment, Pakistan Army||Major||1958 Indo-Pak Border Skirmish||7 August 1958|
|3||Raja Aziz Bhatti Shaheed||17 Punjab Regiment, Pakistan Army||Major||1965 Indo-Pak War||10 September 1965|
|4||Rashid Minhas Shaheed||No. 2 Fighter Conversion Unit, Pakistan Air Force||Pilot Officer||Bangladesh Liberation War 1971||20 August 1971|
|5||Rana Shabbir Sharif Shaheed||6 Frontier Force Regiment, Pakistan Army||Major||Bangladesh Liberation War 1971||6 December 1971|
|6||Sawar Muhammad Hussain Janjua Shaheed||20 Lancers (Armoured Corps), Pakistan Army||Sawar||Bangladesh Liberation War 1971||10 December 1971|
|7||Muhammad Akram Shaheed||4 Frontier Force Regiment, Pakistan Army||Major||Bangladesh Liberation War 1971||5 December 1971|
|8||Muhammad Mahfuz Shaheed||15 Punjab Regiment, Pakistan Army||Lance Naik||1971 Indo-Pak War||17 December 1971|
|9||Karnal Sher Khan Shaheed||Sindh Regiment/12 Northern Light Infantry, Pakistan Army||Captain||1999 Indo-Pak Kargil Conflict||7 July 1999|
|10||Lalak Jan Shaheed||12 Northern Light Infantry, Pakistan Army||Havildar||1999 Indo-Pak Kargil Conflict||7 July 1999|
∗ On 14 March 1949, the Defence Council of Azad Jammu and Kashmir adorned Naik Saif Ali Janjua Shaheed with Hilal-e-Kashmir (posthumous) and on 30 November 1995, the Government of Pakistan initiated the gazette notification to declare his Hilal-e-Kashmir equivalent to Nishan-e-Haider. However, according to legal opinion in Pakistan, this is an ex post facto declaration of equivalence and, therefore, not really the award of a Nishan-e-Haider per se 
- "Honours and Awards". Pakistan Army. Retrieved 6 June 2009.
- "Nishan e Haider holders of Pakistan Army ~ PAKISTAN DEFENCE BLOG". www.defenceblog.org. Retrieved 2015-08-24.
- "Recipients of "Nishan-e-Haider"". Pakistan Paedia. JalalsPages. 28 November, 2005. Check date values in:
- Pakistan Legal Journal, Vol 2, No 89, Summer 1997, pp. 112-114