The 14 Punjab regiment, including Subendar Malkiat Singh was deployed near Garibpur on the eastern front during the 1971 Indo-Pak war. On 21st November, as Pakistani activities increased across the border, the regiment was asked to capture Garibpur in the early hours of the morning to take the enemy by surprise.
The pitched battle for Garibpur that began, lasted till the 22nd of November. Subendar Malkiat Singh defended a position that was under constant and fierce enemy infantry and armored attacks. The Pakistani soldiers opened machine gun fire advancing forward till they were within 50 meters of the Indian positions.
Undaunted, Subendar Singh crawled forward and took on the advancing enemy soldiers. He killed two Pakistani machine gunners. Twice he was hit, but he carried on until an enemy tank shell struck him, wounding him fatally.
For his courageous act of gallantry, Subendar Singh was posthumously awarded the Mahavir Chakra.