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khukuriHouse HANDICRAFTINDUSTRYESTD . 1991
The word Gurkha is derived from Gorkha, a small town in Nepal that lies ninety kilometers north of Kathmandu valley, on the way to Pokhara . Gurkhas are native people mainly from mid-western and eastern Nepal. They represent nearly all the ethinic groups of Nepal even though Magars, Rais, Gurungs and Tamangs form a majority within the ranks. Gurkhas are famous for their courage, loyalty, neutrality and impartiality. A Gurkha soldier is more than a mere warrior and embraces the traits of simplistic humanity without a fuss.
A face contorted with determination and intensity, a warrior honorable, brave, loyal and astute. He is a symbol of these qualities in war and peace. His ferocity is as legendary as his loyalty to the British Monarch and his regimental history is packed with acts of incredible bravery and sacrifice. The love of his mountainous homeland and his family is profound and keeps luring him back after the call of duty. He is the indomitable Gurkha soldier and a legend in his own right.
Approximately 200 kilometers from Kathmandu lies the valley of Pokhara surrounded by the mighty Annapurna range. The recruitment of the Gurkhas from the surrounding villages is concentrated in this region. This is the home of the Gurkhas. A landscape that makes the Gurkhas what they are.
The formation of the Gurkha Army, started long before the Treaty of Sugauli signed by Nepal, India and Britain. They were initially recognized as the Local Battalion or Native Army and were deployed to numerous fronts and successfully assisted the British achieved their military objectives. Gurkhas along with British have fought countless wars, campaigns, battles including the Great War (World War I) and World War II and in many post-world war fronts where Gurkhas have shown their outstanding bravery, courage and spirit to fight till death under the harshest of conditions. More than 200 thousand fought in WW I and more than quarter a million in WW II with more than 45 thousand killed or injured in both wars. Gurkhas continues to serve the British with the same passion, attitude and faith and their courage, loyalty and ability as an honorable and a fearsome soldier of the world has never been questioned and presumably will never be. This highly commendable support from the Gurkhas strengthened the bond of friendship and loyalty in between Britain and Nepal and both have been the closest of friends and allies since then.
The objective of this leaflet is to give brief information on the Khukuriand Gurkhas to all customers of KHHI. The leaflet tells about the origin,
aspects, significance, utilities etc of the celebrated KUKRI and similarly;formation, history, decoration, importance, division etc of the legendary
GURKHAS. We sincerely hope youd find it useful and enjoyable.
Khukuri & Gurkhas Info
VISIT US ATGurkha VCs
VC (Victoria Cross), the UK's highest award, is the most honored, prestigious award and the senior most decoration for valor and heroism in the line of duty awarded by the British Government. Twenty-Six Victoria Crosses have been won by Gurkha Regiments so far among which Nepali Gurkhas have won thirteen Victoria Crosses.
Below are the Gurkha VC holders with whose bravery, gallantry and loyalty have recognized Gurkhas as the most formidable soldiers along with the year and the place where they were honored by the VC.
S.N Name Regiment Year Place1 Kulbir Thapa 3rd Queen Alexandras Own Gurkha Rifles 1915 Fauquissart, France2 Karan Bahadur Rana 3rd Queen Alexandras Own Gurkha Rifles 1918 El Kefr, Egypt3 Lal Bahadur Thapa 2nd King Edward VIIs Own Gurkha Rifles 1943 Rass-es-Zouai, Tunisia4 Gaje Ghale 5th Royal Gurkha Rifles 1943 Chin Hills, Burma5 Tul Bahadur Pun 6th Gurkha Rifles 1944 Mogaung, Burma6 Agamsing Rai 5th Royal Gurkha Rifles 1944 Bishenpur, Burma7 Ganju Lama 7th Duke of Edinburghs Own Gurkha Rifles 1944 Ningthoukhong, Burma8 Thaman Gurung 5th Royal Gurkha Rifles 1944 Monte San Bartolo, Italy9 Netra Bahadur Thapa 5th Royal Gurkha Rifles 1944 Bishenpur, Burma10 Sher Bahadur Thapa 9th Gurkha Rifles 1944 San Marino, Italy11 Bhanbhagta Gurung 2nd King Edward VIIs Own Gurkha Rifles 1945 Snowdon East, Tamandu, Burma12 Lachiman Gurung 8th Gurkha Rifles 1945 Taungdaw, Burma13 Ram Bahadur Limbu 10th Princess Marys Own Gurkha Rifles 1965 Sarawak, Borneo
Brigade of the Gurkhas (present)
The Brigade of Gurkhas is the collective term for units of the current British Army that are composed of Nepalese soldiers. The brigade includes infantry, engineer, signal, logistic and training and support units.The major units of the Brigade today are The Royal Gurkha Rifles (two battalions), The Queen's Gurkha Engineers, Queen's Gurkha Signals, and The Queen's Own Gurkha Logistic Regiment.
The Royal Gurkha Rifles (Two Battalions i.e. 1RGR & 2 RGR)
Queens Gurkha Engineers (QGE)
Queens Gurkha Signal (QGS)
The Queens Own Gurkha Logistic Regiment (QOGLR)
Singapore Police Force Gurkha Contingent (SPFGC)
The Gurkha Contingent (GC) of the Singapore Police Force was formed on 9th April 1949. It is an integral part of the Police Force and is well trained, dedicated and disciplined body whose principal role is as a special guard force. The history of the Gurkha Contingent is intrinsically linked to the formative years of Singapore when it was called upon many times to help restore law and order on the streets. After Singapore gain independence from the British, GC played a crucial role in controlling riots and violence amongst the ethnic groups that threatened the very existence of the new born country. Thus, being more than perfect and suited for the job, GC was integrated to the national security force of the country forming Singapore Police Force Gurkha Contingent or SPFGC.
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Bravest of the brave, most generous of the generous,Never had country more faithful friends than you.
-Professor Sir Ralph Turner MC on the legandary Gurkhas
Kukri InfoSome of the famous knives of the world such as the Bowie Knife, the Stiletto, the Scimitar, the Roman Sword, the Machete and so on have all, at one time or the other, played great historical roles as formidable weapons with men have demonstrated raw power and courage during times of battle. The kukri, however, outdoes them all!
Khukuri, a mid-length curved knife comprising a distinctive Cho is the national knife and icon of Nepal. A formidable and effective weapon of the Gurkhas and an exquisite piece of local craftsmanship that represents the country and its culture and also symbolizes pride and valor. There are two names for this knife that are now universally accepted, Khukuri or Kukri. Khukuri is the strict Nepalese version that is very common, famous and household name in Nepalese literature. However Khukuri is more known as Kukri in the western world and beyond which we see is an anglicized version of the British when they first discovered the knife.
The construction of khukuri is very basic and simple yet it has style and class of its own. In Nepal, people still use very traditional and primitive method and conventional tools to make it. In early Nepal, most villages would have a metal smith famously known as Kamis who forged khukuris to their best ability. The khukuri blades have always varied much in quality. Inferior and high quality steels both have been equally used thus needs an expert eye and skill to distinguish one from the other. Old heavy vehicles spring (suspension) steel has always been the source of a good quality khukuri blade.
Khukuri grips are normally made from local walnut wood called Sattisaal in Nepalese, domestic water buffalo horn and some very fancy from brass, aluminum; and even ivory and rhino horn are used for some very special ones. Basically two types of tang are applied; one is the rat-tail tang that goes all the way through the handle narrowing its surface area as it finishes towards the end of the handle and its end/tail is penned over and secured. The other is the full flat tang that also goes through the handle but the tang can be seen on the sides of the handle and steel rivets are fixed to secure the handle to the tang.The khukuri is carried in scabbard, Dap in Nepalese, where normally 2 pieces of wooden frames are covered with water buffalo hide or other domestic animal parts and may or may not have brass or steel protective chap depending on the type of khukuri.
Shapes and sizes of khukuris from ancient to modern ones have varied intensely from place to place, person to person, maker to maker and so forth. Only the standard army issue were and are made of the same dimension and measurement in order to bring uniformity and tidiness to the unit; whereas local khukuris still continue to vary from one another making it impossible to characterize or distinguish a particular khukuri from the rest.
Origin of the Kukri
None of us precisely know the fact as to how kukri originated or who initiated it. The original place and date have also lost in the midst of time. Even the spelling has been disputed or butchered (Kukri, Khukuri, Kukuri, Khukri, Kookuri etc) since someone first tried to describe this knife.
There are many beliefs and suggestions as to how the kukri came into existence. Amongst them, one of the most convincing and compelling is the Kopis version. Origin of the kukri has been unswervingly linked to the classic Greek sword or knife known as kopis, which is about 2500 years old. The shape and style of the knife strikingly resembles the kukri (see pi