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Opinion

Bank on Gurkhas for your security

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Khathar hunnu bhanda marhu ramro. Or in English: "It is better to die than live a coward." That's the motto of the Brigade of Gurkhas, as London financial sector workers are about to find out.

Recruited from Nepal, the Gurkhas have served with the British Army for nearly 200 years. Famed for their loyalty and bravery, Gurkhas have won 26 Victoria Crosses, Britain's highest military decoration. They still carry their fearsome 18-inch long curved knives called kukris.

Knights-bridge Gurkha Services (KGS), part of London-based Knightsbridge Security, specializes in Gurkha re-employment. Ex-Gurkhas have worked around the world, but since the UK changed its immigration rules last year, retired Gurkhas can now settle in Britain and are increasingly finding work as security guards in the City.

Banks like JPMorgan have already used ex-Gurkhas for security work in Hong Kong, and demand is growing in London, according to KGS.

But it's not just their toughness that the Gurkhas are famed for. Back in 1812, after the battle of Kalunga in Nepal, the British built a monument to their Gurkha opponents that praised their "liberal courtesy" during lulls in the fighting.

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