1. As they were not the subject of the crown, initially, the Gurkha Brigade was known as India’s Foreign Legion.
2. The first ever soldiers who had joined the then Indian Army and started the two hundred years’ long tradition were actually Kumaon and Garhwals which happened to be under Nepal’s jurisdiction by then.
3. The 9th Gurkha Regiment, which mostly enlisted the soldiers from Khas and Thakuris tribes, is also known as The Khas regiment.
4. Brian Hudgson was the most influential British resident in Kathmandu and wielded tremendous power in the government. So much so that even the formation of new cabinet said to be needed his final approval.
5. The relationship between Kalcutta and Kathmandu was said to be cold and unfriendly until Jang Bahadur took the helm, he did not only send troops in support of the British in trouble but also led the troop south by himself as well in some occasions. He also was the first leader from Nepal who was invited by the crown and visited/welcomed as the head of nation during his one month visit to UK.
6. Jang Bahadur’s admiration for the Queen Victoria was said to be legendary, some books even claimed they were lovers, and rumor had it that Jang Bahadur himself told the Gurkha soldiers to take care of British interests very well as of theirs own.
7. It was Chnadra Shamsher who took the relationship to a new height. In WW1, he did not only send 200000 youths out of 5m population of Nepal, sent fund, and changed the rule of ‘Kaalo Paani or ocean’ and introduced ‘Paani Pattiya” through Raj Guru, so, Gurkhas could be sent overseas for war.
8. Before WW1, Gurkhas were not entitled of Victoria Cross (VC), the highest medal they were awarded was “Order of Merit”, and Gurkhas won 2 VCs during WW1.
9. Judha Shamsher did the same in WW2 and sent out more than a quarter million of youths for war, the Gurkhas won a staggering 10 VCS in WW2 alone and played a very important role on defeating the Japanese in Burma.
10. A total number of approx. 60000 Gurkhas died, lost or didn’t return home from WW1 and WW2. In return, Chandra Shamsher was made an full General of Indian Army and honorary general in French Legion, invited/visited to UK as Jang Bahadur did before, and was called respectfully “Your Highness of Nepal”. In 1934, the legacy of Nepal embassy was allowed in London and the embassy was finally opened in 1947.
Historians, intellectuals and the whole Nepali people might have forgotten them but it won’t be an exaggeration at all that their sacrifices alone had saved Nepal and as a result, we still have a nation to call as of our own today.
More on my coming Gurkha book, mark the page, thank you!😀✍️👏🙏👈
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