TRUE STORIES AND FACTS

Near Torcillino on the Asriatic front ex-mess orderly Jitbahadur Rai under going his first experience of battle, a smallish man even for a Gurkha, charged through the smoke of buring grass into a wood and cut down two Germans with his kukri. Unluckily they collapsed on top of him. As he lay under 350 pounds of German, a third gunner came on. Freeing his sword arm, Jiabahadur slashed at the German as he bent down and almost severed the arm above the elbow. Later, the ex-mess orderly was seen walking beside the stretcher bearing his third victim, his bloodstained kukri in one hand, patting the German’s shoulder with the other and explaining in fluent Gurkhali that he had no intention of completing job.
- And some in lighter vein….. One sultry night in World War 1, a British destroyer was moving unlit through the Suez Canal when from the West Bank came a cry, ‘Halt, who go there?’ The ship sailed on and the challenge was repeated. Still the ship sailed on and the voice challenged, ‘Halt, or I fire,’ which was swiftly followed by a shot which struck the bridge of the still- moving ship. Hastily the captain rang for the engines to be stopped. A searchlight revealed a Gurkha rifleman with bayonet fixed in the “on guard” position. By chance one of the ship’s officers spoke some Hindustan and was able to explain the position to the sentry, whereupon the Gurkha returned his rifles to the “port” position and called, “Pass, friend”.

 

 

The Gurkha swung his kukri with a deft sideways cutting movement.
“Ja! Missed,” cried the German.
“Try shaking your head”, retorted the Gurkha.

Gurkha’s VC to be auctioned for poor:
The first ever auction of a Victoria Cross (VC) awarded to a Gurkha soldier is expected to raise at least 110,000 pounds to help poor children in Nepal.

Agansing Rai, a veteran of the famous battle for Imphal in World War II, lived a humble life. He could have chosen a path of luxury, simply by selling his VC. But it never occurred to him. Now, four years after Agansing Rai’s death, his VC is being sold. It is the first Gurkha VC ever to be sold at auction.

His two sons and three daughters will give the money to a charity that provides welfare and education for Nepal’s desperate children.

“What you can do with 110,000 pounds to help children in Nepal is fantastic,” said Richard Bishop, a consultant at London auction house Spink. “ We’re hoping the medal raises even more.”

Rai was a 24-year-old corporal in the fifth Royal Gurkha Rifles when he showed outstanding bravery during the campaign against the Japanese in Burma in June 1944.

There was fierce fighting around Imphal. Rai and his men, who had already taken heavy casualties, were ordered to capture an area covered by the murderous fire of two machinegun posts, 200 yards apart, and an artillery position.

As every minute passed, Gurkhas were being cut down and Rai knew he had to attack fast. The first machine-gun post could only be approached by going up a hill in full view of the enemy. With men dying all around him, Rai stormed the post single-handed, killing three of the four crew.

Then Rai led his men towards the artillery position. Half of the Gurkhas were killed but he charged on, silencing the gun. With a tommy gun in one hand and a grenade in the other, he took on the second machine-gun position, killing all the enemies.

Bishop said: “It is likely to be the only Gurkha Victoria Cross that is sold at auction. Most of them are in museums and a couple of them have been stolen from the men.”

Rai died in kathmandu at the age of 80. Many turned out for his funeral procession. He was always known as a quiet hero with a gentle sense of humor. In 1971 Rai retired from the Indian army with the honorary rank of captain. He went back to the village of Amsara in eastern Nepal where he was born, and lived with his wife and children in a two-room house.

In 1986 he was presented to the Queen when she made a state visit to Nepal.

Courtesy – The Himalayan Times