THE ONLY living Nepalese Gurkha recipient of the Victoria Cross came to Winchester last week (April 9) to officially open a new business.
Rambahadur Limbu, who served in the brigade of Gurkhas in the British army from 1960 to 1985 retiring as Captain, received the award in 1965 at the age of 26.
He was Lance-Corporal in the 2nd Battalion 10th Princess Mary’s Own Gurkha Rifles during the Indonesian Confrontation in Borneo in 1965, when a 30 strong group of Indonesian soldiers opened fire on the party of 16 Gurkhas.
Mr Limbu defeated them with a grenade, and made three trips under open fire to drag his comrades to safety, and as a result was presented the highest award for gallantry in the face of the enemy – the Victoria Cross.
Now aged 74, he came to Winchester on Wednesday (April 9) to officially launch a new security company that will specifically hire ex-Gurkha soldiers to work within the local community.
Set up by Ekraj Nembang, who served in the 2nd Battalion of the Royal Gurkha Rifles between 1996 and 2013, Mountain Security Services will provide manned guarding, private drivers, butlers, handymen and alarm response amongst other services.
Originally from eastern Nepal, Mr Nembang, said he is looking forward to seeing the business progress.
He said: “It’s a quite good experience and Gurkhas are very suitable for this kind of work. Most of the people are without a job here and I think it will be good for them.”
Speaking exclusively to the Chronicle, Mr Limbu said he believes the company will allow the local Gurkha community to thrive using their specific skills.
“It’s really important the Gurkhas to contribute their skills and knowledge to the wider community and be involved in keeping the community safer, because that is what their experience has been and that is what they want to bring to the local communities,” he said.
“We are from the same district in Nepal, which is why I am here to support him. Whilst I am here I want to meet ex-Gurkhas and other friends as well as celebrate this happy occasion.”
The launch celebration also saw co-founder of local charity Nepalese Help, Kamal Bahadur Purja, attend, and after the ceremonial lighting of the Panas, a religious ornament similar to a candle stick, he addressed the Victoria Cross bearer.
“Thank you so much, we are so humble and proud to meet you, there are no words that I can express,” he said.
The opening was held at Lali Gurans restaurant on City Road.