Mohammad Khan Jarral, got commission on 28th March 1942 from IMA Dehra Doon. During 2nd world war he served with the 2nd Jammu & Kashmir Rifles and went to Iran, Iraq, Egypt, Lebonan and Palestine. In May 1946, Major Jarral, captain at the time was appointed commandant 5th Garrison Police company to curb Sheikh Abdullah's anti-state civil disturbance. On partition he was appointed Adjutant Gilgit Scouts, on 8th August 1947 at Gilgit.
When the Liberation war of the Northern areas started in 1947-48 he joined hands with the Muslim freedom fighters against Maharaja Hari Singh's rule.He was given the command of the combined force consisting of "A" and "B" wings of the Gilgit scouts with the task of capturing Zoji La and then if possible to advance towards Sonamarg and Srinagar. Major Jarral during the early outset of the Kashmir Liberation war captured Bunji in the last week of October, 1947 and liberated Astore area down to Gurez by the middle of November, 1947.
He attacked the Skardu Fort during the night of 11/12 Feburary, 1948. He ambushed and defeated the first indian Relief Column lead by Brigadier Faqir Singh at Thorgopari, 15 miles south of Skardu- Srinagar Road, on 17th March, 1948. The action of Thorgopari paved the way for Captain Jarral's subsequent successes in Baltistan area. He again ambushed and dislodged and humiliated the 2nd Indian Relief Column known as Indian Z-Brigade lead by Brigadier Sanporan Singh at Paskuta.
The enemy now knew that he was up against the determined men of Major Jarral's force. Two Indian Generals, Thimayya and Srinagesh, were personally present with Brigader Atal during planning and mounting of an attack at Zoji La. It shows the great importance the indians gave to it.
Captain Jarral had built up the defences well and the credit goes to his ingenuity in organizing his positions in such a manner that the enemy could not capture even the outlying bunkers and trenches.
On June 12, 1948 Major Jarral lead an attack on the two forward Indian companies at Khoru and Gumri. On June 22, Jarral's men made a surprise dawn attack on the pickets. The enemy thus startled and demoralized, called in air crafts to bomb and strafe the area. As the day went on, the Indians gradually kept losing ground. Eventually, a hand-to hand fight started. The enemy was forced to withdraw after suffering heavy casualties.
A few other pickets were similarly attacked and captured. Simultaneously, Major Jarral was working his way up along the main axis and when the Patiala's realized that their rear was threatened, they withdrew in a disorder. The battle lasted for twenty days and Zoji La was captured on July 7, 1948 by Captain Mohammad Khan Jarral. The enemy lost about 400 men and large quantities of ammunition and other stores fell into the hands of Jarral's force.
It is also interesting to put on record that Major Jarral defeated General Srinagesh who was his former company commander at IMA Dehra Doon from where he got King's Commission.
Major Jarral's courage and bravery against all the odds completely changed the whole scenario of the Liberation war of Northern Areas in 1947-48.
Major Mohammad Khan Jarral with the officers from AK Regiment