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The Khukri Braves (The Illustrated History of The Gorkhas)
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About the Book

 

For 300 years, the Gorkhas of Nepal and India have had a continuous, unique heritage of being celebrated martial defenders with an intact ethnic composition. The Gorkha soldiers were forged through the fires of history to become what they are today.

 

The first-ever illustrated history of the Gorkhas, The Khukri Braves portrays the rich history and culture of this gallant community in all its vibrancy. Painstakingly researched and evocatively written by Jyoti Thapa Mani, one of India's best newspaper and magazine designers, this is the first such book by a person of Gorkhali origin.

 

An exhaustive, vivid compilation of historical research comprising previously unknown anecdotes, surprising facts and breathtakingly beautiful images, it provides a vivid account of the travails and triumphs of the Gorkha community. This is a must-read to understand the heritage of a community heralded for their courage.

 

About the Author

 

Jyoti Thapa Mansi , a graduate in graphic design from the National Institute of Design, Ahmedabad, has worked in Delhi as the design head of The Economic Times, Business Today and Business world.

 

She belong to the sixth generation of an Indian Gorkhali family based in Dharamshala, Himachal Pradesh, for close to 200 years. Her family history aligns with the history of the Gorkhas as her forefathers served with distinction in the 18th-century Gorkha Army of Nepal, the 19th century Indian British-Gorkha Rifles. A Gorkhaphile by interest, she has been researching and documenting the history of the Gorkhas for over ten years by visiting significant locations. I’ m following the Gorkha footprints. The stones and ruins speak volumes is how she describes her passion. Jyoti’s photographs of Gorkha historical sites are on permanent display at the Nepal Army Museum. Kathmandu.

 

Her other Gorkha-related works are:

The Illustrated history of  the 1st Gorkha Rifles (The Malaun Regiment) 1815-2008 as its compiler, photographer, visual editor and designer; the book was published in 2008 by the 1st Gorkha Rifles.

 

Curator of a first-time-ever heritage exhibition on the History, Tradition and Culture of Gorkha Community of Himachal Pradesh’ on 14 April 2010, the occasion of Himachal Diwas at the Kangra Museum of Art, Dharamshala.

 

Foreword

 

This book is an enthusiastic celebration of the travails and triumphs of the Gorkhas, renowned for their unending patriotism and valour. It portrays the intensity of an emotional, personal and deep sense of attachment to the land from where their ancestors have migrated. Jyoti Thapa Mani and her sensitivity towards the Gorkhas has given a new insight to the book.

 

It explores both the military exploits and everyday life of the Gorkhas. The culture, tradition and rituals of the community are skilfully portrayed thereby providing the readers a glimpse into all the aspects of their life.

 

A deeply researched and documented history of the Gorkhas, this book, indeed is the sweat and toil of the author for over ten years. The book is a tribute to all those martyrs who held their country more precious than their own lives. It is also a proud moment for all the members of the Gorkha community who have been doing marvellous deeds.

 

The book shines through with the spirit of Gorkha humour having myself served with the "Bravest of the Brave".

 

A highly illustrative account with abundance of colourful photographs which adds charm and beauty to the book. It is overall a vivid and penetrative account of strong, good-natured and resilient people depicting great courage and endurance as well as a consolidation of the Gorkha empire which included Kumaon, Garhwal and Himachal Pradesh. The book with its release commemorates the bi-centennial celebration of the 1st Gorkha Rifles which completes 200 years this year (1815-2015).

 

The author can be confident that there will be many grateful readers who will have gained a broader perspective about the historical Gorkhas as a result of her efforts.

 

My best wishes and commendation to Jyoti Thapa Mani for giving such an enjoyable reading experience to one and all.

 

Introduction

 

Year after year, on 26th January, at the Republic Day Parade down the boulevard of Rajpath, New Delhi-there is excitement in the compere's voice when a Gorkha contingent marches by. The legendary Gorkhas, the bravest of the brave, the finest infantrymen in the world, all these are the accolades that rest on their firm shoulders as they are led by a proud Gorkha Officer, giving and receiving a standing salute from the President of India. There always has been something special about the Gorkhas which has caught the imagination of many for years. Those who have served with them cannot stop admiring them and many have been driven by the urge to write about their wonderful experiences with them.

 

The Khukri Braves

The Khukri is the hallmark of the Gorkha fighter. The lethal hand weapon began its birth as the hill man's household handy tool in pastoral life; from chopping wood, cutting fodder to hunting and of course defence of self It is the natural extension of his working hand. The khukri design has evolved over years into a perfectly balanced and curved hand grip tool, offering excellent wrist flexibility and tremendous dexterity. In the hands of a Gorkha fighter, it is the perfect hand-to-hand combat weapon. For the true Gorkha warrior, the khukri is revered and worshipped as a holy tool blessed by the Goddess. It stands for his role as a defender or protector.

 

"Kayar Bhanda Marnu Ramro" (Better to die than live a coward).

At the heart of every Gorkha is this motto, fired up by shouts of Ho ki, Hoi Na? (Yes or o?). Replied with lusty Ho, Ho, Ho, (Yes, Yes, Yes). The driving force of the Gorkha fighter is the quest to be recognised as a 'Bahadur' (brave and honourable warrior) which supersedes basic necessities such as salary, rations, etc. Hence, he can risk his life without a second thought.

 

'Jai Mahakali, Ayo Gorkhali"

The battle cry pumps up the adrenalin of Gorkhas to face the challenges of warfare. The Gorkha chronicles began in the eighteenth century, when, under King Prithvi Narayan Shah, they streamed out of the kingdom, gathering different mountain clans who became their strength. The aim of their campaigns was to create one big and strong kingdom. A clash with the British East India Company was inevitable. n the Himalayan region, Nepal's Gorkha Army was the first to be engaged in war with the Company's Forces. Two wars took place between 1814 and 1816, concluding with the signing of the Anglo-Nepal Treaty of Sugauli.

 

“Bravest of the Brave"

-Sir Ralph Turner, MC. 1931

With future campaigns curtailed, from 1815 began a new chapter when the Gorkhas forged a military alliance with the East India Company who called them Gurkhas. The accolades began with sterling performances as they moved from strength to strength through two World Wars.

 

"If a man says he is not afraid of dying, he is either lying or a Gorkha"

-Late Field Marshal Sam Manekshaw, MC.

In 1947, six out of ten Gurkha Regiments opted to serve the Democratic Republic of India. The Gorkhas serve only the Indian Gorkha Brigade and the British Royal Gurkha Rifles performing with equal gallantry as Gorkhas and Gurkhas.

 

The Gorkha identity

40 per cent of the Gorkhas Regiments are taken from the Nepali-speaking Indian citizens, called the Indian Gorkha community. A small percentage gets to join the forces. The rest form the civilian society where education and professional careers have been achieved and remains the quest of many youngsters. The community stands at the brink of breaking tags and stereo-typing to compete in civilian society. But it must not be forgotten that the Gorkha name was earned by the sweat, blood and sacrifices of millions over centuries. The Indian Gorkha community forms the myriad of hill people from Northwest towards Northeast India. While the north-western Gorkhas joined the army, those of the east were largely employed in the tea gardens. Just as the Gorkha soldier is a global phenomenon, the Darjeeling tea is a world class brand. Just as every Gorkha soldier contributed to the legend, each tea bud nimbly plucked by a Gorkhali hand went on to become a connoisseur's delight.

 

The Gorkha brand

Standing for class and strength, the Gorkha has also became a brand- Trax Gurkha, the 4X4 MUV by Force Motors Pune; Gurkha Cigar; the most expensive hand-rolled cigar from the Dominican Republic, Honduras and icaragua; Khukri Rum from Nepal; and Welcom heritage Gurkha houseboats in Kashmir.

 

The Gorkha journey

Tracing the journey of the Gorkhas from the 18th century Nepal till date, this book is an exploratory compilation of research and travel, written with a perspective of opinion and food for thought. There is extensive coverage of the cultural and traditional heritage of the Gorkhas. Balancing between mainframe narrative and pictures, special effort has been made to provide interesting anecdotes with photographs published for the first time. The specially book highlights the history of the very first of the Gorkha Regiments-1st Gorkha Rifles (The Malaun Regiment) which celebrates 200 years this year. Above all, the book is a tribute to all the Gorkhas.

 

Contents

 

FOREWORD

11

FOREWORD

13

INTRODUCTION

15

PART l: GORKHA AND NEPAL

 

CH.1: BABA GORAKHATH AND GORKHA. WHERE THE LEGEND WAS BORN.

20

CH.2: THE SHAH KINGS OF NEPAL: 1769-2008, EVOLUTIO OF A MONARCHY.

32

CH.3: NAG HRAD OR TANK OF THE SERPENT GODS.

40

CH.4: JAI MAHAKALI AYO GORKHALI' HOW NEPAL WAS EXTENDED BY THE GORKHAS.

46

CH. 5: GORKHALI AND NEPALI ETHNIC DIASPORA.

60

PART 2: GROWTH OF NEPAL

 

CH.I: GORKHA ARMY CALLED FOR HELP ACROSS THE RIVERS KALI, BEA AND SUTLEJ.

74

CH.2: SPOTLIGHT: BADA KAZI AMAR SINGH THAPA.

84

CH.3: THE SIEGE OF KANGRA FORT. 1806-1809: BATTLE OF LIONS.

88

PART 3: ANGLO-GORKHA WARS

 

CH. I: EAST INDIA COMPANY AND NEPAL

114

CH.2: EAST INDIA COMPANY DECLARES WAR ON NEPAL

122

CH.3: "WATER, WATER" THE BATTLE OF KHALANGA.

136

CH.4: UNVANQUISHED-GORKHAS AT JYTHUCK.

146

CH.5: FLAMES OF MALAUN THE BATTLE OF GIANTS.

154

PART 4: 1ST GORKHA RIFLES (THE MALAUN REGIMENNT)

 

CH.1: NUSSEERREES: THE GORKHA IS REBORN.

172

CH. 2: 1850. THE NUSSEEREE BECOMES THE 66TH OR GHOORKHA RIFLES.

184

CH. 3: THE 1ST GORKIIA RIFLES (THE MALAUN REGIMENT). TAKE A BOW.

190

CH. 4: 30 YEARS OF GLOBAL WARFARE. THE WWI, NWFP AND WWII.

234

PART 5: 1947. PARTITION ONWARDS

 

CH. 1. I: 1942: GURKHAS AND THE INA.

306

CH. 2: 1947: FORMATION OF THE GORKHAS. CONTINUATION OF THE GURKHAS.

318

CH. 3: THE 1ST GORKHA RIFLES IN BATTLES POST-1947.

345

PART 6: GORKHA HERITAGE

 

CH. I: FAITH, TRADITION A D RELIGION

358

CH. 2: ANCIENT GORKHA FORTS AND TEMPLES IN NORTH INDIA.

372

LAST PAGES. GORKHAS: THE LEGEND MARCHES ON...

403

BIBLIOGRAPY

404

ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS

407

 

Sample Pages



















The Khukri Braves (The Illustrated History of The Gorkhas)

Item Code:
NAK625
Cover:
Paperback
Edition:
2015
ISBN:
9788129136855
Language:
English
Size:
11.0 inch x 8.5 inch
Pages:
408 (Throughout Color Illustrations)
Other Details:
Weight of the Book: 1.2 kg
Price:
$85.00   Shipping Free - 4 to 6 days
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About the Book

 

For 300 years, the Gorkhas of Nepal and India have had a continuous, unique heritage of being celebrated martial defenders with an intact ethnic composition. The Gorkha soldiers were forged through the fires of history to become what they are today.

 

The first-ever illustrated history of the Gorkhas, The Khukri Braves portrays the rich history and culture of this gallant community in all its vibrancy. Painstakingly researched and evocatively written by Jyoti Thapa Mani, one of India's best newspaper and magazine designers, this is the first such book by a person of Gorkhali origin.

 

An exhaustive, vivid compilation of historical research comprising previously unknown anecdotes, surprising facts and breathtakingly beautiful images, it provides a vivid account of the travails and triumphs of the Gorkha community. This is a must-read to understand the heritage of a community heralded for their courage.

 

About the Author

 

Jyoti Thapa Mansi , a graduate in graphic design from the National Institute of Design, Ahmedabad, has worked in Delhi as the design head of The Economic Times, Business Today and Business world.

 

She belong to the sixth generation of an Indian Gorkhali family based in Dharamshala, Himachal Pradesh, for close to 200 years. Her family history aligns with the history of the Gorkhas as her forefathers served with distinction in the 18th-century Gorkha Army of Nepal, the 19th century Indian British-Gorkha Rifles. A Gorkhaphile by interest, she has been researching and documenting the history of the Gorkhas for over ten years by visiting significant locations. I’ m following the Gorkha footprints. The stones and ruins speak volumes is how she describes her passion. Jyoti’s photographs of Gorkha historical sites are on permanent display at the Nepal Army Museum. Kathmandu.

 

Her other Gorkha-related works are:

The Illustrated history of  the 1st Gorkha Rifles (The Malaun Regiment) 1815-2008 as its compiler, photographer, visual editor and designer; the book was published in 2008 by the 1st Gorkha Rifles.

 

Curator of a first-time-ever heritage exhibition on the History, Tradition and Culture of Gorkha Community of Himachal Pradesh’ on 14 April 2010, the occasion of Himachal Diwas at the Kangra Museum of Art, Dharamshala.

 

Foreword

 

This book is an enthusiastic celebration of the travails and triumphs of the Gorkhas, renowned for their unending patriotism and valour. It portrays the intensity of an emotional, personal and deep sense of attachment to the land from where their ancestors have migrated. Jyoti Thapa Mani and her sensitivity towards the Gorkhas has given a new insight to the book.

 

It explores both the military exploits and everyday life of the Gorkhas. The culture, tradition and rituals of the community are skilfully portrayed thereby providing the readers a glimpse into all the aspects of their life.

 

A deeply researched and documented history of the Gorkhas, this book, indeed is the sweat and toil of the author for over ten years. The book is a tribute to all those martyrs who held their country more precious than their own lives. It is also a proud moment for all the members of the Gorkha community who have been doing marvellous deeds.

 

The book shines through with the spirit of Gorkha humour having myself served with the "Bravest of the Brave".

 

A highly illustrative account with abundance of colourful photographs which adds charm and beauty to the book. It is overall a vivid and penetrative account of strong, good-natured and resilient people depicting great courage and endurance as well as a consolidation of the Gorkha empire which included Kumaon, Garhwal and Himachal Pradesh. The book with its release commemorates the bi-centennial celebration of the 1st Gorkha Rifles which completes 200 years this year (1815-2015).

 

The author can be confident that there will be many grateful readers who will have gained a broader perspective about the historical Gorkhas as a result of her efforts.

 

My best wishes and commendation to Jyoti Thapa Mani for giving such an enjoyable reading experience to one and all.

 

Introduction

 

Year after year, on 26th January, at the Republic Day Parade down the boulevard of Rajpath, New Delhi-there is excitement in the compere's voice when a Gorkha contingent marches by. The legendary Gorkhas, the bravest of the brave, the finest infantrymen in the world, all these are the accolades that rest on their firm shoulders as they are led by a proud Gorkha Officer, giving and receiving a standing salute from the President of India. There always has been something special about the Gorkhas which has caught the imagination of many for years. Those who have served with them cannot stop admiring them and many have been driven by the urge to write about their wonderful experiences with them.

 

The Khukri Braves

The Khukri is the hallmark of the Gorkha fighter. The lethal hand weapon began its birth as the hill man's household handy tool in pastoral life; from chopping wood, cutting fodder to hunting and of course defence of self It is the natural extension of his working hand. The khukri design has evolved over years into a perfectly balanced and curved hand grip tool, offering excellent wrist flexibility and tremendous dexterity. In the hands of a Gorkha fighter, it is the perfect hand-to-hand combat weapon. For the true Gorkha warrior, the khukri is revered and worshipped as a holy tool blessed by the Goddess. It stands for his role as a defender or protector.

 

"Kayar Bhanda Marnu Ramro" (Better to die than live a coward).

At the heart of every Gorkha is this motto, fired up by shouts of Ho ki, Hoi Na? (Yes or o?). Replied with lusty Ho, Ho, Ho, (Yes, Yes, Yes). The driving force of the Gorkha fighter is the quest to be recognised as a 'Bahadur' (brave and honourable warrior) which supersedes basic necessities such as salary, rations, etc. Hence, he can risk his life without a second thought.

 

'Jai Mahakali, Ayo Gorkhali"

The battle cry pumps up the adrenalin of Gorkhas to face the challenges of warfare. The Gorkha chronicles began in the eighteenth century, when, under King Prithvi Narayan Shah, they streamed out of the kingdom, gathering different mountain clans who became their strength. The aim of their campaigns was to create one big and strong kingdom. A clash with the British East India Company was inevitable. n the Himalayan region, Nepal's Gorkha Army was the first to be engaged in war with the Company's Forces. Two wars took place between 1814 and 1816, concluding with the signing of the Anglo-Nepal Treaty of Sugauli.

 

“Bravest of the Brave"

-Sir Ralph Turner, MC. 1931

With future campaigns curtailed, from 1815 began a new chapter when the Gorkhas forged a military alliance with the East India Company who called them Gurkhas. The accolades began with sterling performances as they moved from strength to strength through two World Wars.

 

"If a man says he is not afraid of dying, he is either lying or a Gorkha"

-Late Field Marshal Sam Manekshaw, MC.

In 1947, six out of ten Gurkha Regiments opted to serve the Democratic Republic of India. The Gorkhas serve only the Indian Gorkha Brigade and the British Royal Gurkha Rifles performing with equal gallantry as Gorkhas and Gurkhas.

 

The Gorkha identity

40 per cent of the Gorkhas Regiments are taken from the Nepali-speaking Indian citizens, called the Indian Gorkha community. A small percentage gets to join the forces. The rest form the civilian society where education and professional careers have been achieved and remains the quest of many youngsters. The community stands at the brink of breaking tags and stereo-typing to compete in civilian society. But it must not be forgotten that the Gorkha name was earned by the sweat, blood and sacrifices of millions over centuries. The Indian Gorkha community forms the myriad of hill people from Northwest towards Northeast India. While the north-western Gorkhas joined the army, those of the east were largely employed in the tea gardens. Just as the Gorkha soldier is a global phenomenon, the Darjeeling tea is a world class brand. Just as every Gorkha soldier contributed to the legend, each tea bud nimbly plucked by a Gorkhali hand went on to become a connoisseur's delight.

 

The Gorkha brand

Standing for class and strength, the Gorkha has also became a brand- Trax Gurkha, the 4X4 MUV by Force Motors Pune; Gurkha Cigar; the most expensive hand-rolled cigar from the Dominican Republic, Honduras and icaragua; Khukri Rum from Nepal; and Welcom heritage Gurkha houseboats in Kashmir.

 

The Gorkha journey

Tracing the journey of the Gorkhas from the 18th century Nepal till date, this book is an exploratory compilation of research and travel, written with a perspective of opinion and food for thought. There is extensive coverage of the cultural and traditional heritage of the Gorkhas. Balancing between mainframe narrative and pictures, special effort has been made to provide interesting anecdotes with photographs published for the first time. The specially book highlights the history of the very first of the Gorkha Regiments-1st Gorkha Rifles (The Malaun Regiment) which celebrates 200 years this year. Above all, the book is a tribute to all the Gorkhas.

 

Contents

 

FOREWORD

11

FOREWORD

13

INTRODUCTION

15

PART l: GORKHA AND NEPAL

 

CH.1: BABA GORAKHATH AND GORKHA. WHERE THE LEGEND WAS BORN.

20

CH.2: THE SHAH KINGS OF NEPAL: 1769-2008, EVOLUTIO OF A MONARCHY.

32

CH.3: NAG HRAD OR TANK OF THE SERPENT GODS.

40

CH.4: JAI MAHAKALI AYO GORKHALI' HOW NEPAL WAS EXTENDED BY THE GORKHAS.

46

CH. 5: GORKHALI AND NEPALI ETHNIC DIASPORA.

60

PART 2: GROWTH OF NEPAL

 

CH.I: GORKHA ARMY CALLED FOR HELP ACROSS THE RIVERS KALI, BEA AND SUTLEJ.

74

CH.2: SPOTLIGHT: BADA KAZI AMAR SINGH THAPA.

84

CH.3: THE SIEGE OF KANGRA FORT. 1806-1809: BATTLE OF LIONS.

88

PART 3: ANGLO-GORKHA WARS

 

CH. I: EAST INDIA COMPANY AND NEPAL

114

CH.2: EAST INDIA COMPANY DECLARES WAR ON NEPAL

122

CH.3: "WATER, WATER" THE BATTLE OF KHALANGA.

136

CH.4: UNVANQUISHED-GORKHAS AT JYTHUCK.

146

CH.5: FLAMES OF MALAUN THE BATTLE OF GIANTS.

154

PART 4: 1ST GORKHA RIFLES (THE MALAUN REGIMENNT)

 

CH.1: NUSSEERREES: THE GORKHA IS REBORN.

172

CH. 2: 1850. THE NUSSEEREE BECOMES THE 66TH OR GHOORKHA RIFLES.

184

CH. 3: THE 1ST GORKIIA RIFLES (THE MALAUN REGIMENT). TAKE A BOW.

190

CH. 4: 30 YEARS OF GLOBAL WARFARE. THE WWI, NWFP AND WWII.

234

PART 5: 1947. PARTITION ONWARDS

 

CH. 1. I: 1942: GURKHAS AND THE INA.

306

CH. 2: 1947: FORMATION OF THE GORKHAS. CONTINUATION OF THE GURKHAS.

318

CH. 3: THE 1ST GORKHA RIFLES IN BATTLES POST-1947.

345

PART 6: GORKHA HERITAGE

 

CH. I: FAITH, TRADITION A D RELIGION

358

CH. 2: ANCIENT GORKHA FORTS AND TEMPLES IN NORTH INDIA.

372

LAST PAGES. GORKHAS: THE LEGEND MARCHES ON...

403

BIBLIOGRAPY

404

ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS

407

 

Sample Pages



















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