Thursday, May 24, 2007

VC Hero Denied Permission to Live In Britain

THIS is truly shaming. A Victoria Cross hero Gurkha has been banned from living in Britain 'because he has no strong ties with UK' according to the Daily Mail.

Tul Bahadur Pun's extraordinary act of valour while fighting the Japanese during
World War Two even won him royal admirers. He was invited to the Queen's
Coronation and had tea with the Queen Mother. Yet despite his illustrious
service record, when the ailing 84-year-old former Gurkha soldier applied for
permission to live in Britain he was refused by government officials. Amazingly,
British officials in Nepal told the wizened old warrior who put his life on the
line for King and country: "You have failed to demonstrate that you have strong
ties with the UK." Explaining his reasons for the application, he said: "I take
a substantial amount of medication daily, without which I would die. There is
not always a constant supply. When it runs out I feel vulnerable. "There are no
doctors or nurses, no medical outposts. I wish to settle in the UK to have
better access to medication, care and support from doctors and nurses." The old
soldier has to travel from his remote home to the Gurkha camp at Pokhara once a
month to collect his pension - which pays for his medication. It involves a
day's walk - and as he is unable to walk that far, he has to be carried in a
basket by several men. Mr Pun's act of heroism in Burma which earned him the VC
has gone down in military history. On 23 June 1944 almost all his comrades were
wiped out by heavy enemy fire. He seized a Bren Gun and, firing from the hip
while running through ankle deep mud, he ignored Japanese fire to singlehandedly
storm enemy machine gun positions. His official citation read: "His outstanding
courage and superb gallantry in the face of odds which meant almost certain
death were most inspiring to all ranks and beyond praise."

But if you have a failed asylum application you stand little chance of being expelled. What kind of country have we become?


If you are an MP and you are reading this, solving cases like this is what you are all about. Go to it!

84 comments:

Meifodboy said...

I hang my head in shame at this news. Shame because I have served my Country and served with these humble, proud and courageous men from Nepal. There is not a single member of this Government fit to walk in his shadow.

My sincere apologies to Tul Bahadur Pun VC. I for one salute you.

Daily Referendum said...

The Ministry of Defence is to pay ex-Gurkhas the same pensions as British soldiers. Ex-Gurkhas Currently receive just a sixth of the average army pension (£984 a year) and many ex-Gurkhas say they are left destitute.
The new pension deal will not apply to Nepalese soldiers who retired before July 1997, leaving many disappointed.
Padam Bahadur Gurung, President of the Gurkha Army Ex-Servicemen's Organisation, said: "This is good news for serving Gurkhas, but not for the Gurkhas who fought in the Second World War and the Falklands."
There are currently about 3,500 Gurkhas serving in the Army and close to 20,000 former soldiers living in Britain and Nepal.

Daily Referendum said...

Meifodboy,

I'm also hanging my head. Just before I left the Navy these superb fighters were working as laundrymen onboard RN Ships. They did this to make a living after their regiments had been disbanded. Degrading is not the word, a sixth of a pension meaning they had to do sailor's laundry away from home to provide for their families.

This is a crime.

fnusnuank said...

Even though I am an ex soldier I feel ashamed.

Shame on us. said...

I don't know what to say, I just do not know what to say.

I know it is wrong.

Cranmer said...

His Grace is appalled.

It is immeasurably depressing that Poles, Romanians, Bulgarians, and any other 'EU' Tom, Dick and Harry (or should that be Brigitte, Salame, Parul?), who have absoluely no ties to the the United Kingdom whatosever, may migrate here, yet this war hero, who has proved his valour and dedication to Queen and Country, may not.

May God forgive the gross injustice of this amoral nation. His Grace is ashamed.

fnusnuank said...

His Grace has scratched an itch.

We let the GERMANS in and the FRENCH, but not one of us.

Get my gun, I want to shoot myself rather than surrender.

Anonymous said...

Well said, Iain!

Auntie Flo'

Anonymous said...

Just playing devils advocate here, but his specific objective is to exploit our medical services and he freely admits that he has a large requirement. What taxes has he paid to fund this?

jailhouselawyer said...

I don't think confusing the issue with EU migration helps.

No doubt I have read his story in one of those war comics as a lad.

To fight in a war for a country and risk his life beyond the call of duty is deserving of more than a slap in the face.

The decision-maker should be put in the stocks until showing signs of repentance.

Doesn't it make you feel proud to be British? Not.

Daily Referendum said...

Anaon @ 10:45 I hope you can pull your head out of your backside long enough to find your way back under your rock.

Chris Paul said...

Sublime. No swearing and no disagreement.

Meifodboy said...

Anonymous said:

"Just playing devils advocate here, but his specific objective is to exploit our medical services and he freely admits that he has a large requirement. What taxes has he paid to fund this?"

Words fail me.

Except that is, for the two on his Victoria Cross.

"FOR VALOUR"

Observer said...

I should like to hear the full story - Audi Partem Alteram -

The agreement on Gurkhas goes back to Independence of India when we agreed not to pay them differential rates from Indian Army Gurkhas

He wants to come and live in the UK for medical treatment which is probably a reason for exclusion under the rules....if we establish a principle of an International Health Service open to anyone in the world without family in bRitain we could have very crowded hospitals.

What I do not understand is that we are told how good Indian hospitals are, how many NHS patients go to India for surgery, and how many excellent hospitals there are in India.

I would prefer to give him an ex-gratia payment so he can have excellent treatment in India

Iain Dale said...

Anonymous at 10.45. I am lost for words.

Gareth said...

Referendum,

Navy too, respect. I'm going to try, and fail as the tears stream down my face, to put his exploits into perspective. This man was one of the Chindits, an expeditionary force that went hundreds of miles behind Japanese lines to, very successfully, disrupt their supply lines. The Chindits went through rain forest, mountain pass and, hostile territory with only donkeys to carry their supplies (sometimes the donkeys had to be eaten)to take the fight to the enemy when WWII was being lost on most fronts. to say the least their work was difficult, dangerous and usually short lived!!

the work of the Chindits, along with that of the Long Range Desert Group in North Africa formed the tactical underpinning of the SAS. These people are an unimaginably important part of Britain's recent military history and they made sacrifices the civil servants who made this call could not even begin to imagine. This man is a hero and we owe him our freedom, we are infinitely diminished by not embracing people like him.

shame does not begin to describe my feelings. I sometimes wonder why I still serve. I suppose it's because I aspire to make a contribution to Britain that even vaguely approaches his.

And anymong 1045, crawl away and die you utter scumbag. When you have given to this country what he has, come back with you head held high, until then, you are nothing.

Grendel said...

Truly and utterly disgraceful and beneath contempt. Does anyone know the identity of the officials involved? I would love to know how their own unique contribution to this country compares.

kinglear said...

I am on the committe for the Gurkha Welfare Trust in Scotland. Most people are unaware that there are still over 10,000 ex-Gurkhas with no pension and no support from the UK Government. The GWT was set up in the 60's to honour our debt to these people - a debt which must be paid.
The GWT pays each and everyone of these men approx. £23 per month, which is roughly the average wage in Nepal. We also have over 20 medical centres, but, indeed , they are not next door to most people in that wild and mountainous country.
The Government, with much ill will, has started to redress the balance with the recent pension award, but of course all those old Gurkhas of prior years remain destitute. The government has compounded the problem, because, to gain a pension at all, 15 years have to be served. Since 1997, the MOD has conducted a policy of "retiring" soldiers just prior to the 15 years service. Of course, for UK citizens, they remain eligible for health services, benefit and eventually a pension.
Gurkhas simply don't.
Disgusting and degrading to the British public.

Anonymous said...

This makes me hopping mad.

we can let in millions of people who have done nothing for this country (and still do nothing except take things out) and yet this poor soul who has given to live for people like me, we have the F******g cheek to say that he has no connection with the UK.

Madness, pure madness.

I wish the old boy well.

Meifodboy said...

Grendel

It is probably some Foreign Office graduate who thinks that Courage is a beer his Dad used to drink.

"You have failed to demonstrate that you have strong ties with the UK."

After all is said and done how can,

" Mr Pun earned his VC in Burma on June 23, 1944, after almost all his comrades were wiped out. He seized a Bren Gun and, firing from the hip and running through ankle-deep mud, he ignored Japanese fire to storm machine gun positions."

compare to counting paper clips in the High Commission in Khatmandu whilst moaning at the outrageously low levels of Tax Free allowances paid to HM Civil Servants in the Foreign Office.

If it wasn't so sad you would cry.

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Anonymous said...

You can delete me if you like, Iain, but it just proves how shallow you are. There's nothing more reprehensible than a person who is prepared to kill for money. One can accept with reservations the doctrine of 'Just War' (Cranmer, are you still awake?) but mercenaries? They are the lowest of the low.

Anonymous said...

Anon 1145pm

That is a fair point but it could have been put more eloquently. Perhaps along the lines of:

" There is another side to this. Pun VC was a Mercenary and in the pay of the British. He took an Oath to the King and his shilling. He could have quite easily taken the Emporers Yen and sworn allegiance to Japan. But he didn't. Instead he fought for this country so that 63 years later, I am able to enjoy freedom of speech and write comments on a Blog. Whilst I disagree with the comments expressed on this blog I do at least have the grace to thank this old and brave man for choosing the right side and allowing me the right to express my opinion."

Now thats better you sad person.

achilles said...

Blair's Britain.......

Cranmer said...

Cranmer, are you still awake?

Indeed. Being dead, His Grace has no somnambulistic tendencies.

However, His Grace can't be bothered to commune with anonymice who lack the imagination to even think of a name. And in your case, you are so clearly ignorant of church history, Augustine, Aquinas, and a host of other Church Fathers, who spent decades formulating the 'Just War' theory, of which who have such an inadequate - not to say non-existent - grasp.

Iain Dale said...

Anonymous, you are a coward. Put your own name to posts like this and I could even have just a little respect for you. Anyone who receives a VC is a hero. Gurkhas are not mercenaries as you well know. You disgust me.

Nadine Dorrie's Toyboy said...

At a time when our Government seeemingly welcomes with open arms any Islamic terrorist who fancies bulding his bombs here this story is an absolute disgrace. Now of course if he was a Muslim hate merchant then there would be a carefully co-ordinated well orchestrated campaign, with much sympathy from the mass media, to allow entry, but in this case everyone will just mumble a bit and then this gross injustice will continue onwards. What kind of thanks is that for a VC holder and bona fide hero?

Anonymous said...

Iain! Excellent post (with one caveat). Here are a few thoughts from Seattle, which is as far from London as Katmandu:

1) If earning the Victoria Cross by charging an enemy machine gun nest isn't "a strong tie to the UK" then what the heck is?

2) Unless HM's Govt has been handing out VCs in exchange for a Wheatabix boxtops, seems extremely doubtful that making an exception in this & similar cases will break the NHS's piggybank.

3) Agree totally with Jailhouselaywer: mixing this case up with asylum seekers, Polish plumbers and the like is both wrongheaded and counterproductive; keep in mind that the outlander you scorn might have an inspirational personal history, or at the very least the potential for making amazing contributions to your Proud Island Story.

4) This type of mindless bureaucratism knows no boundaries, national or political. Recently ran across an account of a man born in China who stowed away on a Yankee merchant ship, was adopted by the captain & his wife, and fought with distinction in the Union Army during the Civil War; for example, at the Battle of Cold Harbor, where he rescused a wounded comrade, and rejoined the firing line. After the war he went on to serve 30 years in the Army out west; one of his assignments was guarding Sitting Bull, who he reported was "nice" and "kind". After his discharge, he applied for a Homestead land grant, but his claim was denied on the grounds that he wasn't a US citizen, because the Oriental Exclusion Act passed after the Civil War prohibited the naturalization of any Chinese. This poor guy had assumed that his service in the ranks had earned him his citizenship, as had everyone else in his community; indeed he joked that he'd voted the Republican ticket for 30 years! Despite the injustice done him, he was a proud, loyal American to the end of his ripe old age

5) Best of luck to Mr. Tul Bahadur Pun VC; may he keep on kicking and fighting for many years to come; and may one or more MPs take up his cause!!!

olympic catastrophe said...

Should we have a whip-round for this hero's medicinal needs? It might shame those responsible into changing their attitude.

Daily Referendum said...

I'm not a particularly religious man, but I pray this man will see some comfort and care in the time he has remaining.

Anon: what comes around goes around.

uncle tul's putative nephew. said...

As a usually honest person I wish to state that this is my long lost Uncle Tul whom I haven't seen for years. Thank goodness you have found him.

His room has been ready for him for years and we miss him greatly.

I can assure Immigration that Uncle Tul will be fully supported at no cost to the Government and would probably wish to act as a role-model for some of the more feckless youth of this country.

Uncle Tul's ties are stronger than most of the Country's population considering his outstanding service.

Here's thought Iain.

How's about a Cause Celebre to sponsor and support Uncle Tul and provide for him in HIS hour of need. He certainly didn't fail US.

Is this an impractical suggestion or does it possibly have 'legs'.

I intend to post this thread to my MP for his perusal.

May I suggest that others do so as well. I feel that Parliamentary support would help greatly as the only way to obtain a variance in the rules would be at Ministerial level.

I feel so ashamed.

jus' passin' thru' said...

jailhouselawyer said...
I don't think confusing the issue with EU migration helps.

No doubt I have read his story in one of those war comics as a lad.

To fight in a war for a country and risk his life beyond the call of duty is deserving of more than a slap in the face.

The decision-maker should be put in the stocks until showing signs of repentance.

Doesn't it make you feel proud to be British? Not.

May 24, 2007 10:50 PM


jailhouse.


I agree with your thoughts completely........for once.

So you do have a conscience after all.

In recognition of this I will refrain from making a quip regarding an altogether more severe punishment for the decision maker.

Thanks for your support.

drunken tory said...

Bloody disgraceful. This man put his life on the line for people like you and me, and now we wont even let him live his final few years on our purse.

Shame.

mitch said...

damn these people,it seems these days that freeloaders get everything and those brave people who are prepeared to risk all to defend us get treated like lepers.how can this be fair or right?id rather an ex gurka as a neighbour than an eastern european freeloader.

Anonymous said...

"Since 1997, the MOD has conducted a policy of "retiring" soldiers just prior to the 15 years service. "

kinglear - this is a revelation !

Observer said...

Be pointless him coming here anyway. As a foreigner he would have to pay for treatment because he cannot become a charge on public funds. Those are the rules.

After 1st August 2007 the NHS will be in crisis as the disastrous government attempt to seize control of doctor training from the Royal Colleges collapses with MMC and MTAS and hospitals enter the winter without doctors.

He simply would not get anywhere on the waiting list before he died

Blogfan said...

I remeber a few years ago driving out of the fery terminal at Dover to go past lots of young men of foreign birth who were sunning themselves outside those first guest houses as you enter Dover town. I then visited the battle of britain memorial on my way home and I was moved to tears by that wonderful monument and disgraced to find out that it had to rely on the collection boxes. I contrasted the sacriface of the young serviceman of the second world war as they sat around in the sun waiting to go up into the skies and die for their country with the welcome for the freeloaders down the road.
I owe my freedom to the likes of this VC winner, the right to fulminate on your blog, everything is thanks to him. He has a place in any hospital queue in this country. Let him in!

I wish I could have two minutes in a locked room with the two folk who wrote the disgusting anon comments.

antifrank said...

On this occasion, I must reach for a cliche. You couldn't make it up. The Gurkhas get treated badly in general, but surely we can make a special case for a VC holder? There can't be more than a dozen alive in total. What a disgrace.

Anonymous said...

Would Her Majesty be moved to intervene if she knew about this? Perhaps she should be told ...

john bull, esq. said...

Sir,
The thought of this proud man living in a council flat on a run-down estate in our country, phoning the NHS out-of-hours service and queuing in an A&E department for his heathcare saddens me. Better by far, sir, to wake and see the sun rising over the Himalayas once more; surrounded by family and friends, respected by everyone he meets.

If he cannot get to the Gurkha hospital, then the medics should go to him. I have no doubt that this could and should be arranged forthwith.

Finally, a quote to be remembered -

"As I write these last words, my thoughts return to you who were my comrades, the stubborn and indomitable peasants of Nepal. Once more I hear the laughter with which you greeted every hardship. Once more I see you in your bivouacs or about your fires, on forced march or in the trenches, now shivering with wet and cold, now scorched by a pitiless and burning sun. Uncomplaining you endure hunger and thirst and wounds; and at the last your unwavering lines disappear into the smoke and wrath of battle. Bravest of the brave, most generous of the generous, never had country more faithful friends than you".

The words of Professor Sir Ralph Turner, MC, who served with the 3rd Queen Alexandra's Own Gurkha Rifles in the First World War.

Bristol Mafia said...

I have just emailed my MP re this. Bloody disgusting.

Fidothedog said...

My father was a soldier in Korea and he and his vetran friends are appalled by this, he will be contacting his mp as will I.

Rather my taxes went on one old soldier than 100,000 home grown chavs.

Its tales like this that make you wonder where this nation is heading, some reward for an old soldier that is,

Anonymous said...

Abu Hamza can live here but Mr Pun cannot!

My Dad was in Burma during the war and swore by the Ghurkas.

They have stood by this country how many of our new migrants will do this!

Def Con One said...

I rarely agree with what you have to say and even less often with the Daily Mail. However, on this issue you are spot on. As far as I know there are only 12 living holders of the VC and 4 of them are Gurkhas. Our position on this is a disgrace.

Chuck Unsworth said...

Awful news. This is absolutely disgusting treatment of a man who does not ask much and who has been prepared to give his life in service of this country.

The decision should be rapidly reversed and those responsible for this outrageous ruling should be publicly named.

It's astounding that anyone with an ounce of integrity could do this.

Like many readers here I have lived and worked with Gurkhas - and in several parts of the world. They are men who command respect, dignified and unassuming. I resent this treatment of a people to whom we owe so much.

Daily Referendum said...

I've emailed my MP, please do the same.

john bull, esq. said...

"...a Battalion of the 6th Gurkha Rifles was ordered to attack the Railway Bridge at Moguang ...the enemy opened concentrated and sustained cross fire at close range from a position known as the Red House and from a strong bunker position two hundred yards to the left of it...both the leading platoons of "B" Company, one of which was Rifleman Tulbahadur Pun's, were pinned to the ground and the whole of his Section was wiped out with the exception of himself, the Section Commander and one other man. The Section Commander immediately led the remaining two men in a charge on the Red House but was at once badly wounded. Rifleman Tulbahadur Pun and his remaining companion continued the charge, but the latter too was immeditely badly wounded.

Rifleman Tulbahadur Pun then seized the Bren Gun, and firing from the hip as he went, continued the charge on this heavily bunkered position alone, in the face of the most shattering concentration of automatic fire, directed straight at him. With the dawn coming up behind him, he presented a perfect target to the Japanese. He had to move for thirty yards over open ground, ankle deep in mud, through shell holes and over fallen trees. Despite these overwhelming odds, he reached the Red House and closed with the Japanese occupants. He killed three and put five more to flight and captured two light machine guns and much ammunition. He then gave accurate supporting fire from the bunker to the remainder of his platoon which enabled them to reach their objective.

His outstanding courage and superb gallantry... were most inspiring to all ranks and were beyond praise".

Extracts from London Gazette 9 November 1944

Anonymous said...

Anonymous @ 10.45 "Just playing devils advocate here".

Lose the cloak of anonymity and lets play "Ooh where have your f**cking balls gone?"

Zorro

El Dave. said...

In France, a foreigner who joins the Foreign Legion gains citizenship at the end of their service. If they are injured in the line of duty, they are given citizenship immediately with the status of 'Francais par le sang verse' - French through spilt blood.

On the basis that you have lots of readers, how about setting up a petition on the No 10 website?

Grannys.Myth.Peeler said...

I think this hero should enter England & seek political asylum on the grounds that if he remain in his own country he will die as the direct result of a governments inaction.

The government in question? This one.

The inaction? Unequal army pension , welfare & support from this nation.

So on that basis he could enter the UK, ironically in the guise he was fleeing the UK. Oh how a correctly worded application would tie the red tape brigade up for years. A catch that Yossarian himself would be proud of.

Perhaps he could even cut a deal with our ministers in an M&M enterprises fashion, by staying in his home country but arranging for an English veteran to collect his prescription over here on his behalf & forward it on. & in turn Mr Pun could p**s on his war veteran neighbours to save the British Government the trip.

All I can say is thank you Tul Bahadur Pun for having the courage to give me a future.

Taxcutter said...

The most amazing thing about the Gurkhas is that they still bother with Britain when their bravery and nobility has been so rudely ignored.

What is also a shame is that I had not heard of the exploits of Tul Bahadur Pun VC until this terrible story was blogged by Iain. Such stories of gallantry should be told louder and more often.

not a technically minded person said...

I'm not a technically minded person but surely, Iain,there is a way to put a 'mailto' button on this post redirecting to a govt address?


Not sure which, mind.

Then perhaps we can clog their inboxes with righteous ire.

Anonymous said...

Quite depressed to say I do know a very senior member of the FCO in Nepal and I am highly disturbed to see this news.
I can only hope there is some other part to this story.

jailhouselawyer said...

I know it is Friday and people are starting to wind down for the weekend, I have put a link to this post on conservativehome and I feel that the editor and readers there need a wake up call on this one...

anti socialist behaviour said...

Please tell me this is not true; not while Tony Blair is still Prime Minister, and David Cameron is leader of the opposition. No decent society would treat it's old soldiers like that. Somebody must have their wires crossed on this story, surely.

The Remittance Man said...

Rifleman Pun is not the nanny to the children of some minister's paramour nor is he a shady foreign businessman willing to bung a few sovs at the PM's latest ailing "pet project".

That being the case I would imagine he has little chance of any assistance from anybody on the government benches.

Of course one can hope that a Conservative or LimpDum MP picks this up, but I suspect even if they do little will come of it.

This is how Britain treats the men who fought for us nowadays. Sick isn't it.

Anonymous said...

What is also a shame is that I had not heard of the exploits of Tul Bahadur Pun VC until this terrible story was blogged by Iain.

You mean you never bothered to look up the many sites listing VC holders online ?

Come to Bradford and see the newly created headstone of one of the very first VCs ever awarded - in The Crimea - and how it took until 2000 before a headstone was erected on his pauper's grave

Hughes

but don't ask Bradford why Pte Eric Anderson VC has no memorial or streets named after him - he wasn't a local councillor or freemason

jus' pasin thru' said...

jailhouselawyer said...
I know it is Friday and people are starting to wind down for the weekend, I have put a link to this post on conservativehome and I feel that the editor and readers there need a wake up call on this one...

May 25, 2007 1:58 PM



Actually, I fully support your conscientious action.......

Well done.

forthurst said...

The government wastes inordinate amounts on reorganisations, computerisations, monitoring equality of outcomes, fighting wars on behalf of the international neocon conspiracy, anything but giving the taxpayer a bang for his buck.

This man wants to come to this country because he is not being provided with the first class care and attention he has earned and richly deserves at home.

The MOD has been accomodating our forces badly, sending men into battle without proper armour and sidelining them as soon as they become unavailable for frontline duty to the extent that their lives are put at risk on hospital public wards from the traitors that now walk freely in our country.

The majority of the country opposed the war in Iraq and are totally bemused about the war in Afghanistan.

The government needs to accomodate, equip, and care for are servicemen and ex-servicemen in order to help repay the debt we owe to them all wherever they live.
If that means we can't afford a defense policy of arselicking neocon scum, then so much the better.

andy said...

If this absurd decision is not reversed, this is no longer a country worth fighting for.

Adam said...

I haven't been this angry about something for a very long time.

I'd give UK residence rights to all the Gurkhas that serve for a sufficient length of time. They are some of the bravest and most dedicated troops in the world, and they're serving the UK. Tul Bahadur Pun risked almost certain death in service to the UK and this is what he gets? Jesus wept. I hope this gets sorted damn quick.

secarr said...

Words fail me. Spluttering outrage and disgust is the best I can muster. I'll leave it to Kipling:

There were thirty million English who talked of England's might,
There were twenty broken troopers who lacked a bed for the night.
They had neither food nor money, they had neither service nor trade;
They were only shiftless soldiers, the last of the Light Brigade.

Barrister 2 B said...

I AM AGAST. SOME ONE NEEDS A KICK IN THE PANTS

MAJHAM said...

O England! model to thy inward greatness,
Like little body with a mighty heart,
What mightst thou do, that honour would thee do,
Were all thy children kind and natural!

Disregard the above, its now a croc.

Marquee Mark said...

Utter rage is the only sentiment I can feel on this matter.

I want the Conservative front bench to stand as one on this issue. If not for a hero, then when? I want Cameron to seize the Parliamentary Bren Gun, and firing from the hip as he goes, charge on this heavily blinkered position.

jailhouselawyer said...

I have just emailed my MP Diana Johnson, so there is really no excuse for her not knowing about this case and raising it either in the House of Commons or with the relevant authority.

Anonymous said...

This Gurkha like any Gurkha, once a Gurkha always a Gurkha.I rubbed shoulders with the Gurkhas in Malaya and they made me very welcome in thier camp.Like all soldiers,once a sodier always a soldier,just like the 22 SAS.Come on lads you all knew the score in Malaya and else where,give this old Gurkha some support please.If he can get to england,i will help him,i know for certain he would help me.

maneatingcheesesandwich said...

I have arrived at the post somewhat late in the day, but have been left speechless since picking up the story earlier. Whoever has put their name to this decision fully deserves the derision they have received today.

Doubtless the decision was made in line with current policy, but if they were not prepared to argue the man's case for exception then they should feel doubly ashamed.

The people of Nepal have been faithful friends of our country for generations and have sent their sons to fight and die for both Empire and Commonwealth. Money is not, and should not be, the issue. If we fail to look after our heroes, be they home-grown or not, then we shame our own ancestors.

Charon QC said...

I agree.... shameful and appalling.

I have reported on my law blog.... - and have attributed my sources.

Hopefully some (more) lawyers will see this story. I do not read The Mail... I picked this up through your blog and those who picked it up through your post

Paul Buddery said...

The only consolation with regard to anonymous of "devil's advocate and mercenaries" ilk is that by sitting indoors penning his/her odious comments, he/she is not outside vandalising cars.

John J. Coupal said...

On the other hand,

...if a genuine hero is not allowed to enter Britain, your immigration authorities will see to it that a radical Muslim who has no plans to assimilate will readily be admitted to Britain to take his place !

Gogol said...

Tul Bahadur Pun's lawyer Martin Howe has set up a website where instead of venting here the posters can actually do something to help this man.

www.vchero.co.uk/

On there is a petition link to Downing St - not concerned with Tul Bahadur Pun but with giving citizenship to all Gurkhas who have served this country should they and their immediate families so desire to live here - and judging by the hate posts on here one would wonder why they should wish to do so.

However, for the more compassionate majority here, please visit:-

//petitions.pm.gov.uk/gurkhas-rights/

A petition solely for Tul Bahadur Pun V.C. on the Downing St site will follow.

You can also send an email to

support@vchero.co.uk

addressing your support for this hero and servant to this country. This will offer direct and concrete action in his case as it will go before the Immigration Judge concerned with his case.

He is an exceptional man. He deserves no less than exceptional support from each and every one of you - including those who have posted hate filled posts.

Gogol said...

If the readers are still not convinced....

Note the date he won the VC - 23rd June 1944.

As you are all politically astute, you will know when Tony Blair is to leave office.

What better final action than the P.M. does something decent to help this man who gave so much 63 years ago.

Gogol said...

http://www.thehimalayantimes.com/fullstory.asp?filename=6a1Ra5vdo2am8&folder=aHaoamW&Name=Home&dtSiteDate=20070526

Finally, if you read this story posted on the Himalayan Times you will see that H.M. Goverment are screwing all (including, recently serving ) Gurkhas out of what is rightfully theirs.

Read "Equal - Pay Challenge Too Late." 15 to 18 years of service to the flag dismissed.

Adrian Yalland said...

I am speechless. Iain, can you let me know where I can contact this man/get more details.

I am going to Nepal in a few weeks and would like to visit him, and take him out a supply of the medicine he requires (if it is possible).

Adrian Yalland said...

anonymous 10:45. What taxes have the members of other EU states allowed to move here actually paid? At least this chap did something to defend our country and our values.

We may all be friends now - but that doesn't mean we can ignore past obligations.

This is shameful!

Adrian Yalland said...

There are some very ignorant people out there!

Gurkhas are NOT mercenaries - or at least no more of a mercenary than the young men from Bootle or Sheffield who join the army to escape their poverty!

The Gurkhas deserve a great deal of consideration given that they still form a very important role in the (over stretched and under funded) armed forces despite being repeatedly insulted by the country they give their lives to defend.

In many senses, they are modern Buffalo soldiers!

They are exceptionally brave, and when I used to know a few of them (my son went to school with children of Gurhka families based in Colcehster), I was always impressed with their humility, gratitude and kindness.

In this case, the citation alone is enough to warrant the care he requires and a pension for life. They only give VCs for acts of bravery which were undertaken despite the knowledge that it would almost certainly lead to their death. I doubt anyone who made this mean spirited decision will ever have to make the choices this man did.

Our country is a shame to itself!

flashgordonnz said...

Nah: leave him be in his mudhut. I'd much rather my taxes were spent on taxis for MPs and sending delegations to plucky Cuba. Plus I hear some offices around Whitehall are looking a bit drab.

ps Do i really need to place an irony flasg on this comment?

Anonymous said...

Dear All

I am Mr Pun VC's soicitor.

We have set up a website to support his cause. You can all help by getting all your friends to go to it and email. All emails will be used on his appeal.

Post on every forum and blog. Tell people to write and email their MPs and insist the injustice to the Gurkhas stops.

Go to: www.VCHero.co.uk

Also to the person who posted:-

"Just playing devils advocate here, but his specific objective is to exploit our medical services and he freely admits that he has a large requirement. What taxes has he paid to fund this?"

My client served this country for 18 years. I've seen his Military Discharge records. He was described as "exemplary". HE PAID TAX TOO, as do virutally all Gurkhas (save when now fighting in Iraq and Afghanistan, as is the case for British soliders also). He has not taken anything from the NHS, despite that tax he's paid, so why can't he have a few years for what he did pay in before he dies?

However, whatever tax may concern some, my client paid his "debt" to this country on a foreign field on 23 June 1944. YOU OWE HIM THE DEBT, NOT THE OTHER WAY AROUND!

Remember 45,000 Gurkhas have died fighting for this country. They have served Britian, loyaly, for 200 years. If we had a minutes silence for every Gurkha wounded in battle during World War II, only, we would have to stay silent for 2 weeks. The Gurkha regiments have won 26 Victoria Crosses, 13 to Nepalese Gurkhas.

My client is only 1 of 12 very special people in the world ie living holders of the supreme award for gallantry in the face of the enemy. However, he is left to live in a house with no roof, no running water, no electricity, and uses wholes dug in fields as his toilet. However, he has not complained but instead asked if he could come here to see out his final days as he is now too ill to remain in Nepal (his home).

I have other Gurkha clients who where wounded in the Falklands and they too are considered not to have "sufficient links to the UK".

It is now time to pay back the debt WE owe these people, so that we could live in freedom and enjoy our rights.

Do something, email, petition, complain. Tell the Government that this is not done in our name.

Remember the words on the Epitaph Kohima War Cemetery in Burma, for those who fell fighting alongside my client:-

"When you go home, tell them of us and say: 'For your tomorrow we gave our today'

Thank you, the decent, outraged, silent majority of Britian. I believe that this is the one issue where public pressure can make a real difference, but you have to stand up (like my client) move forward and be counted. A single email may not be a lot from one person, but it is a wave when put with all the others who feel just like you.

Thank you.

Kieran O'Rourke
Howe & Co Solicitors
Ealing, London

www.vchero.co.uk

Serving Gurkha Soldier said...

If I were him I would go to the Japanese Embassy instead and offer my sincere apology for killing their people for nothing. I am sure the Japanese authority would now accept his apology and offer him with whatever help that is denied by British Govt.

What a morale booster message for all Gurkhas who are currently deployed on active service in all major battle fields!!

My message to all my collegues is -By all means read the stories but don't be destracted by this and just give your best.

As a serving Gurkha soldier I now have serious doubts whether or not to wear my Operational Medals with similar pride. If a VC medal does not mean anything then why am I being asked to wear other medals?

Don't worry people of this country As soon as I retire I will return to my homeland and live there with pride. All Tax that I have paid throughout my army career can be given to those people who think we are here just for money and nothing else. One thing for sure is that we as Nepalese citizen never beg for help. We rather die hard.

southwoldL10 said...

Perhaps this brave gentleman should have played football or cricket for this country, or won an olympic medal to show his true commitment rather than just risk his life and be awarded a mere VC. For goodness sake you pen pushing suit if not for people like him your comfortable well paid western lifestyle may not even exist. Apologise or resign, or better still, apologise and resign, now!!!

Anonymous said...

The lack of understanding by not helping this man dilutes the VC which WAS know through out the World as the top award for Valour.
Once demeaned can never be restored.

Mark said...

Thankfully, sense has prevailed http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk/6715743.stm

My disappointment is in the process and lack of "empowerment" (to use a good 90's phrase) that allowed this to happen - surely the people across who's desk this application flowed should be getting an "E" for "weakness in the face of paperwork" in the next assessment.

Anonymous said...

The Gurkhas are and were always our fiercest soldiers and they are and were totaly there for the British army in which they were proud to serve I wonder if they are still proud of us
Stuart Martin aka Rupert