http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/worldnews/article-1051124/The-loyal-Gurkha-whos-refused-medical-treatment-Britain--afford-500-visa-fee.html My apologies if this has already been posted somewhere else on ARRSE. I can not believe the stupidity and idiocy present in the UK Embassy Visa Office in Nepal. Particularly after the campaign for Pun VC! Full story follows: The loyal Gurkha who's been refused medical treatment in Britain... because he can't afford the Â£500 visa fee By Vanessa Allen Last updated at 11:30 PM on 31st August 2008 He served Britain loyally for 24 years as a solder in the Gurkhas, and was awarded the Military Cross by Prince Philip. He was also chosen to meet the Queen when she visited Nepal in 1986 because of his exemplary record. But now, in his hour of need, Britain has turned its back on 81-year-old Lalit Bahadur Gurung. Gurkha Lalit Gurung lies bed-ridden at his home in Nepal and cannot get medical treatment in Britain because he can't afford the Â£500 visa fee After a massive stroke left the retired Army Captain paralysed, he has been prevented from coming here for medical treatment because he cannot afford the Â£500 visa fee. Mr Gurung's son carried him to see British officials in Kathmandu . But they said they could not consider his request to waive the visa fee unless he was officially declared destitute. Lawyers for the former Queen's Gurkha Officer are now seeking a judicial review of that decision on compassionate grounds. Mr Gurung's case is the latest to be taken on by campaigners who believe that Britain has betrayed its most loyal soldiers, who risked their lives for a country many had never even seen. There is mounting public anger that the Gurkhas, who have served alongside British troops since 1815 and won 26 Victoria Crosses, are denied the rights given to their British counterparts, and even to thousands of migrants every year. Mr Gurung, who lives in the remote Nepalese town of Pokhara, joined the Gurkhas on his 18th birthday in 1944 and served in India and Singapore during the Malayan Emergency uprising. In 1964 he was presented with the Military Cross, Britain's third highest military honour, for his bravery in fighting insurgents in Borneo and Brunei. He said: 'The thought that my British colleagues appreciated my actions enough to award me a gallantry medal still moves me to tears. I was overjoyed that Prince Philip flew to meet me and the other troops, and that he would take the time to care about us.' Captain Lalit Gurung wears his medals with pride and, right, accepting his Military Cross from Prince Philip in 1964 In July 1996 Mr Gurung had a stroke and was in hospital for more than three months. Nepal has no free health service and his treatment cost him 300,000 rupees - Â£2,300 - virtually his entire life savings. He is now paralysed down his left side and also has heart disease and diabetes, and his sight is failing. In a country where the average annual income is around Â£100 his family cannot afford to pay for further care and his doctors say he would get better medical treatment in Britain. He receives a Gurkha pension but it is not enough to support him, his wife and their dependent children and grandchildren, and to pay for his medical treatment. But it is enough to mean he is not officially destitute. Lawyer Kieran O'Rourke, who represents Mr Gurung, said the case could set a legal precedent for hundreds of other sick Gurkhas who were unable to afford the visa application fee. 'Hundreds of brave soldiers are living in poverty in Nepal despite years of extraordinary service for the British Army,' he said. Earlier this year thousands of Gurkha veterans marched on Parliament and handed back their military medals in protest at their 'betrayal'. They are demanding an end to the 'immoral discrimination' which bars retired Gurkhas from taking British citizenship if they left service before 1997, and gives them only a sixth of the pension of their British counterparts. A test case is due in the High Court later this month.