A Collection of Gallantry Awards to the Indian Army for the Burma Campaign 1944-45

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Date of Auction: 22nd July 2016

Sold for £1,000

Estimate: £1,200 - £1,400

A Second World War Burma operations M.C. group of seven awarded to Jemadar Manbahadur Gurung, 1st Battalion, 8th Gurkha Rifles, who led his platoon on a successful ‘nuisance raid’ and inflicted heavy casualties on the enemy in hand to hand fighting during two night attacks in April 1944

Military Cross, G.VI.R., the reverse officially dated ‘1945’; India General Service 1936-39, 1 clasp, North West Frontier 1937-39 (1858 L.-Nk. Manbahadur Gurung, 1-8 G.R.); 1939-45 Star; Burma Star; War Medal 1939-45; India Service Medal 1939-45; General Service 1918-62, 1 clasp, S.E. Asia 1945-46 (I.O. 35870 Subdr. Manbahadur Gurung, 1-8 G.R.), name officially corrected on the second, generally good very fine (7) £1200-1400


M.C. London Gazette 17 January 1946. The original recommendation states:

‘On the night of 11-12 April 1944, south of Buthidaung, Jemadar Manbahadur went out on a nuisance raid on a village with nine men. On the way he was heavily fired on by enemy L.M.G. and rifle fire and was grenaded. He got his party on past this opposition towards his objective and again bumped into a large party of the enemy attacking a position held by a unit of his brigade. Once again he managed to get on and finally reached his objective where he caused great confusion. On the way back he was attacked by about 60 Japs but managed to get his force back to camp with only one killed and one seriously wounded.

On the night of 28-29 April 1944, this G.O. was commanding an isolated platoon in close contact with the enemy. During the night his platoon was heavily attacked and grenaded; one section was cut off and the majority of this section wounded. Rallying his remaining force this G.O. beat off other attacks and during the night 15 of the enemy were believed to have been killed, and five Jap bodies, a Jap L.M.G. and four Jap rifles were found in this area as a result of hand to hand fighting.

Again on 29-30 April 1944, his platoon was attacked, and as a result of further hand to hand fighting captured two more Jap bodies, an L.M.G., a pistol and three rifles.

Throughout the night this G.O. was heard encouraging his men and was a fine example of a leader, determined to hold onto his position at all costs. On this night as well as other occasions when he led his platoon in the attack, this G.O. showed most conspicuous gallantry and skill, and a complete disregard for his own safety which inspired all the men of his platoon.’

Manbahadur Gurung, a Hindu Gurkha from the village of Sane in the Kolma-Bakakot district of Nepal, enlisted in the 8th Gurkha Rifles in October 1931. He subsequently served in the 1st Battalion in the Ramzak Brigade in operations on the North-West Frontier in 1939-40 (Medal & clasp; 1939-45 Star). Commissioned as a Jemadar in August 1943, he won his M.C. for the above cited deeds in the Arakan, which theatre of war his battalion entered in late 1943. As verified by the regimental history, he was wounded in action on Ramree Island on 28 March 1945; sold with copied research.