Saturday, December 1, 2012

An Untold Tale of Gurkhas

"If a Man says he is not afraid of dying, he is either lying or he is Gurkha."


Gurkha are originally from Nepal, who are enlisted in British army.The Name "Gurkhas" originated during Gurkha war(1814-1816) when British were defeated and impressed with the Gorkhali soldiers who at that time only fought with khukuri ( Long Knives ) but still managed to defeat highly trained and advanced British soldiers.

Gurkhas then and now are still widely known for their Loyalty, Physical strength,  orderliness, courage, self sufficiency, endurance to fight persistently in the battle field with military strength, tenacity  and resilience.In the past, it was tradition and as well as honor  for Gurkhas to return from battle with his khukuri tasted the Blood of an enemy and if that's  not the case then the owner of the khukuri must cut himself before returning to the camp.However,fortunately its not the case now.The Gurkhas are identified by Victorians as the"Martial Race" possessing masculine quality for strength and toughness.

Photo : Gurkhas posing with their trademark weapon "Khukuri"
Photo extracted from

Since Gurkhas hails from Nepal and the country being multi-ethnic country, the place for Gurkhas are always dominated by 4 ethnic race ; Gurung, Rai, Magar and and Limbus. Every year about 30,000 young men  From Nepal compete to become gurkhas but out of the total number, only 200 are recruited.The Selection Process for Gurkha Army is considered as one of the toughest Procedures of the world where one of the task for an instance will be  Running uphill carrying 70lbs Stone in Basket for an hour continuously.

Young boys from hill town area of Nepal Preparing for Gurkhas recruitment.
Image extracted from

Where are Gurkhas From ~ Their Origin of Name and Soldiers

Image Extracted from

Gurkhas (1896 )
Photos extracted from Wikipedia

Tracing the Genesis of Gurkhas soldier, the birth of Gurkhas was from hill-town region of Gorkha which is one of the district or part of Nepal.But according to Legend, the Name "Gurkhas" was not derived from the place they came from (Gorkha ) but rather during the 8th century one of the Hindu saint-warrior who is known as Guru Gorakhnath gave the soldiers ( Gurkhas ) curved Bladed Knife which we call it khukuri.

Portrait of Gorakhnath

How do they Joined British Army ?

More than 200 years ago, British soldiers serving in East India Company interfered with fearless soldiers of Gorkha or Gurkhas.After they fought from 1814-1816 the battle finally came to an end but with mutual respect for each other  where the British soldiers agreed to recruit the Gurkhas in their army.Both party signed an agreement with the conclusion of Battle.

One of the soldiers in British army during Gurkha war described Gurkhas - " I never saw more steadiness or bravery exhibited in my life. Run they would not, and of death they seemed to have no fear, though their comrades were falling thick around them".

Gurkhas as part of British Army

First World  War

During First World War, more than 200,000 Gurkhas served in the war under British Army where some 20,000 Gurkhas soldiers were dead.Due to their Bravery and no fear of death, it was said the Gurkhas was lined up at the first  during the war.Most of the Gurkhas served in India where as others were assigned in France,Flanders,Egypt, Palestine and Mesopotamia..

Second World War

During Second World War, more than 250,000 Gurkhas again served in the war under British Army and 32,000 Gurkhas lost their lives in the war.

Post War affairs

After the world war ended and India and Pakistan were independent, Gurkhas were divided between Britain and India.At present, apart from India and Britain,  Gurkhas also serves in Hongkong, Malaysia, Cyprus, Sierra Leone,Iraq and Afghanistan. 

Prince Harry of Britain With Gurkhas

In 2007-08, Prince Harry , the younger son of Charles, Prince of Wales and third in line of  the succession to the throne during his 10 weeks deployment in Afghanistan stayed with Gurkhas.During his stay in Afghanistan with Gurkhas, He was made an honorary Gurkha by fearsome Gurkhas. They gave him their trademark signature weapon "Khukuri" to the Prince as ultimate tribute.

Prince Harry stated "When you know you are with the Gurkhas I think there's no safer place to be, really," 

"They're all armed with kukhuris, so if they run out of ammunition they will charge you with their 'massive swords', as the enemy call them."

He further added : "Everyone is really well looked after here by the Gurkhas, the food is fantastic - goat curries, chicken curries . . . it's really good fun."

One of the Gurkhas Captain YamBahadur Rana said : "We are very lucky to have a prince on our team working with us.

"Definitely he's getting on very well with our boys and certainly in the Ops Room he works next to me and we have a very good working relationship."

Prince Charles,Prince of Wales, thanked about 200 Gurkhas for looking after Prince Harry.

Prince Harry gets training session from Gurkhas

Prince Harry along with Gurkhas Posing during his 10 weeks service in Afghanistan

Prince Harry sharing smile with one of the Gurkhas

Written and edited by :- Aavash Shrestha
Find me on Facebook :-
You can Hire me For Writing Articles and Designing Blog and Layout

Tags :
gurkhas army,army gurkhas,gurkha army,gurkha kukri,kukri gurkha,gurkha kukris,genuine gurkha kukri,gurkha kukri uk,ghurka kukri,gurkhas kukri,gurkha nepal,nepal gurkha,british gurkhas nepal,british gurkha nepal,nepal gurkhas,the gurka,gurka army,gurka nepal,royal gurka,gurkas soldiers,

For Further Reading,
army gurkhas, genuine gurkha kukri, ghurka kukri, gurkha army, gurkha kukri, gurkha kukri uk, gurkha kukris, gurkha nepal, Gurkhas, gurkhas army, gurkhas kukri, kukri gurkha, nepal gurkha

Popular Posts

Man Behind This Blog