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Gorkhas in Uttarakhand
HC tells U'khand govt to issue OBC tag to Gorkhas
Jan 08 2015, The Times of India
The Uttarakhand high court ordered the state government to issue other backward castes certificates (OBC) to all nine castes of the Gorkha community , including Brahmins and Kshatriyas, in the state. Earlier, only four castes under the community were granted OBC certificates. A single bench of Justice Alok Singh decided in the favour of the five castes earlier excluded from the OBC list. “I am thankful to the honourable court for its insightful observa tion of the condition of Gorkha community as a whole,“ said Sandeep Adhikari, the lawyer who handled the petition . “The community has contributed so much to the culture and society of the state, but still has not got its fair share.“
Earlier, a writ opposing the state government's decision was filed by the Gorkha Sudhar Samiti in December 2013.The sate government had then decided to exclude five castes of the Gorkha community in June 2013, citing that they belonged to the general category and hence were not entitled for OBC reservations.
Nepal may bar Gorkhas from Indian Army
[ From the archives of the Times of India]
New Delhi: The blood-curdling “Ayo Gorkhali” battle-cry, backed by the wickedly-curved khukris, may soon lose its long-standing resonance in the Indian Army with the Nepal government again moving towards banning the recruitment of Gorkhas in foreign armies. The Indian defence establishment is watching with concern the BaburamBhattarai government’s fresh move to eventually halt the recruitment of Gorkhas in Indian, British and other armies in line with the recommendations of a parliamentary report, “Nepal’s Foreign Policy in the Changed Context, 2012”. “It’s a proposal being studied in Nepal as of now… no final decision has been taken. We are tracking it closely,’’ said a defence ministry official on Monday. Over 25,000 Nepalese currently serve in the Indian Army’s seven Gorkha Rifles (1st, 3rd, 4th, 5th, 8th, 9th and 11th), each of which has five to six battalions (800 to 1,000 soldiers each), drawing basically from Rais and Limbus of eastern Nepal and Gurungs and Magars from the west. KHUKRI WARRIORS Over 25,000 Nepalese currently serve in the Indian Army’s seven Gorkha Rifles They make up almost 70% of the Gorkha Regiment Another 20,000 Gorkhas in Indian paramilitary and police forces like Assam Rifles The credo of the Gorkhas is ‘better to die than be a coward’ Indian govt pays Gorkhas 1,200 crore in salaries New Delhi: Nepal’s proposal to bar Gorkha recruitment in the Indian Army may not sit well with India. Nepal’s Gorkhas make up almost 70% of the Gorkha Regiment, while “Indian domicileGorkhas’’ from places like Dehradun, Darjeeling and Dharamshala constitute the rest. “Rais and Limbus in 11 GR, for instance, come both from eastern Nepal as well as Darjeeling,’’ said an officer. There are roughly another 20,000 Gorkhas in Indian paramilitary and police forces like Assam Rifles. “Moreover, India has over 80,000 ex-servicemen, 17,000 retired Assam Rifles personnel and 11,000 widows to look after in Nepal. The serving and retired together draw around Rs 1,200 crore annually as salaries and pension from India,’’ he said. Defence minister A K Antony told the LokSabha on Monday that India was going to extend the benefits of its ECHS (ex-servicemen contributory health scheme) to retired personnel in Nepal through three polyclinics at Kathmandu, Pokhara and Dharan, which will also have mobile clinics. The number of serving Nepalese Gorkhas is quite small to operationally matter for the 1.13-million Indian Army, which is much more worried about China’s deft strategic inroads into Nepal at the moment. But the force remains very devoted to continuing its two-century-old “glorious tradition” of recruiting the intrepid and doughty Gorkha soldiers, with Maharaja Ranjit Singh being among the first to tap their never-say-die fighting spirit in the early 19th Century. British Indian Army’s Gorkha regiments won a dozen Victoria Crosses and other top laurels in World War I and II, before they were divided between the British and Indian armies in 1947.