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  1. Sarah Saunders

Gurkha's in Kent forced to accept defeat - over pension battle

They have the reputation of being the most determined, fierce fighters. But today former Gurkha soldiers based in Kent and Sussex have been forced to accept defeat - over their pension rights.

The European Court of Human Rights has ruled that the Government acted within its rights by denying Gurkhas who served before 1997 a full British Army pension.

As Sarah Saunders now reports, the decision has been greeted with dismay by campaigners who believe Gurkhas who have loyally fought for British queen and country have been badly betrayed.

She spoke to former Gurkha Bhimraj Tumbahangphe, Gurkha rights campaigner Peter Carroll and South East MEP Anneliese Dodds.


Royal Gurkha Rifles go on the attack against litter

Gurkha soldiers in Kent have been scaling the Leas cliff in Folkestone in their battle against litter.

The efforts of the Royal Gurkha Rifles 2nd Battalion is in honour of the Queen's 90th birthday, and is one of a series of clean-ups coordinated by Shepway District Council as part of the national 'Clean for the Queen' campaign.

Royal Gurkha Rifles 2nd Battalion Credit: ITV Meridian
Royal Gurkha Rifles 2nd Battalion Credit: ITV Meridian
Royal Gurkha Rifles 2nd Battalion Credit: ITV Meridian
  1. David Johns (@davidjohns_itv)

Maidstone soldiers take on police in rowing challenge

In a battle of soldiers versus police, who do you think might win? That's exactly what a challenge in Maidstone this week tried to find out - and raise plenty of money for charity at the same time.

David Johns explains, talking to Maj Devkumar Gurung of the Queen's Gurkha Engineers; Lt Col Richard Walker of 36 Engineers; PC Paul Hughes; and Ch Insp Mick Gardner of Kent Police.

For the Gurkha Welfare Trust, see For More Than Words, see

Memorial marks 200 years of Gurkha service to Britain

This memorial marks 200 years of Gurkha service to the British Army Credit: ITV

A memorial has been unveiled in Folkestone by Joanna Lumley marking 200 years of Gurkha service to the British Armed forces.

The actress fronted a Kent-based campaign to get British residency rights for all Gurkha soldiers.

ITV Meridian spoke to Joanna Lumley.

Gurkhas 'let down again' over pensions

Former Gurkha soldiers from the South East, who claim the government regard them as second class citizens, say they've been betrayed again.

The latest people to let them down: a group of All Party MPs who've produced a report about they way Gurkhas are treated.

The MPs have made several recommendations to give them a fairer deal, especially over pensions.

But angry Gurkhas say it falls well short of the full equality they've been campaigning for - and say they feel cheated. Phil Hornby reports.


VIDEO: Gurkha hunger strike ends

He hadn't eaten for 15 days and was drifting in and out of consciousness. But today a Gurkha from Reading ended his hunger-strike, after a dramatic intervention by MPs

When Meridian highlighted Gyanraj Rai's protest on Monday, he said he was prepared to die for his cause: securing retired Gurkhas the same pensions as their British counterparts.

Today MPs brokered a deal to end the hunger-strike. The breakthrough follows a remarkable campaign by Kent schoolboy - George Taylor. Phil Hornby has this report.

Joanna Lumley to meet hunger striker

Joanna Lumley and members of the Gurkha Justice Campaign will meet with the hunger striking Gurkha, Gyanraj Rai, who is camped opposite Downing Street, to discuss the announcement on Gurkha's Welfare.

Joanna Lumley will meet hunger striking Reading Gurkha Gyanraj Rai Credit: PA

Martin Howe, solicitor and joint founder of the Gurkha Justice Campaign said:

"This presents a unique opportunity to finally settle genuine issues of concern and allows Gurkhas to continue to be held with affection by the UK Government and people.

We are grateful to Parliament for taking up these important issues and for indicating its support for the work of the Parliamentary Inquiry."

Statement on Gurkha welfare inquiry

Whilst there have been significant developments in recent years in terms of the pay and conditions of Gurkha soldiers and the extension of the right to settlement there remain some outstanding grievances which the Gurkhas are determined to have addressed. It is for this reason that the All Party Group is to hold this inquiry. This will give the Gurkhas the opportunity to make their case to a committee of Parliamentarians and for the Ministry of Defence to publicly address the points”.

– Jackie Doyle-Price, Chair of the All Party Group on Gurkha Welfare

MPs to hold inquiry into Gurkha Welfare

The All Party Group on Gurkha Welfare is to hold a committee of inquiry into the outstanding grievances on the part of retired Gurkhas and the Gurkha community in the UK.

It follows the campaigning of schoolboy George Taylor from Gravesend in Kent, who launched an e-petition on the Downing Street website.

Hunger striker Gyanraj Rai reacts to the news that there will be an inquiry Credit: ITV Meridian
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