Gurkhas say pension increase would save Government millions

Discussion in 'Strategic Defence & Spending Review (SDSR)' started by Sangreal, Oct 6, 2010.

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  1. Gurkhas say pension increase would save Government millions

    An interesting article in the Telegraph today which highlights retired Gurkhas' claims that an increased pension would save the taxpayer up to £500m per year. Essentially the premise is that, after campaigning to be allowed to live in Britain they now claim that it would be cheaper for the Gov to increase their pensions and let them go and live in Nepal!

    Now obviously the whole raft of British welfare handouts are unavalable in Nepal whereas extra cash in your pension pot would be. But, is it not counter-productive to have conducted such a high profile campaign to be allowed to remain in Britain (which I'm absolutely in favour of) just to turn round and say 'pay us a better pension and we'll bugger off back home and save you a few quid'?

    Or perhaps is this part of a longer game to get a better pension?
  2. Rayc

    Rayc RIP

    Pragmatically observ ed, in the UK, no matter what the Govt add ons are like the NHS etc, it will still be a normal existence.

    On the other hand, given the exchange rate, given what they will get as enhanced pension, it would allow one to live like a Prince in Nepal.

    The choice is obvious!

    Many Asian holding British citizenship return to their countries of their origin during the winters so as to avoid the British winter and its heating costs and instead live like Kings splurging around and generally having a ball.

    Swallows do that too!
  3. Rayc

    Rayc RIP

    I could not find the exchange rate for Nepali money.

    For Pakistani exchange rate it is:

    1.00 GBP = 136.773 PKR

    For India, it is:

    1.00 GBP = 70.6808 INR

    A British Pound will be yield more in Nepali currency.

    Compare the purchasing power of the British Pound with that of Indian and Pakistani currency.

    Now who would not like to be back home and having a British pension instead of hanging around in the Blighty.

    Added later:

    Found it.

    1.00 GBP = 115.49 NPR

    Exchange Calculator
  4. It's true that the cost of living is far lower in Nepal than in UK.

    But the exchange rate alone is not a good indicator.

    Were it so, a lot of Brit pensioners would find Japan a financially comfortable place to retire to with
    £1.00= 131.51 Yen
    Sweden £1.00 = 10.60 Kroner
    Instead of those countries being two of the most expensive places to live in the world.

    The only relevence the rate of exchange is, that its fluctuation if you are on a remittance is that your buying power is going to move up or down but you still need a point of reference to compare the changes.
  5. 1 British Pound Sterling = 112.009319 Nepalese Rupees as of 07/10/2010.

    Yes, you could live like a Dwarf among Midgets in Nepal. I think that it was always about the principle of serving Britain for countless years and then being threatened with expulsion that made the Gurkhas campaign for their rights to live in Britain. Good on them for offering to return to Native Soil in exchange for a better lot.

    After all, why on Earth would you want to live out your retirement years in Colchester, for God's sake?
  6. As an addition, there is a chart attached to this link explaining what can be bought for 100 Nepalese Rupees:

    Nepal Money - How much would a Nepalese Rupee buy? - Nepal Vista Travel

    400 NR (4 Pounds Sterling) can buy a bus-ticket to travel Nepal end-to-end.

    800,000 (8,000 Pounds Sterling) can afford a modest car built in China or India.

    A Gurkha retiring at 26 years service at WO1 rank would receive a monthly pension of 24,146 NRs (Not including Cash Lump Sum)

    A Corporal leaving at 22 years would receive the monthly sum of 18,325.83 NRs

    Ref: Gurkha Pensions - British Army Website
  7. Unfortunately this is all pie-in-the-sky stuff. Maj Dewan knows full well that this is a publicity stunt.

    Upping the pre-1997 pension payments is unlikely to have any meaningful effect on the Gurkha
    migration. There is no evidence to support his claim and judging by the numbers of more recently
    retired Gurkhas settling in Cheriton and surrounds, there's little to say that the current higher pension rate is a greater incentive to return to Nepal to settle.

    In fact, if the government, following his calls, introduced a scheme whereby payments would be made to Gurkhas on the provision that they returned to, or remained in Nepal, Maj Dewan would back-pedal as fast as he possibly could.

    Simply because it would exclude Maj Dewan and his (mainly) ex-officer colleagues who have made their permanent homes in UK and are unhappy that their pre-1997 service is calculated at a reduced rate and who are fighting this issue, not least of all on their own behalf.

    Unfortunately, life is rarely as fair as we might wish, and it's a truism that the moment
    you try and put things right for one group of people, you are going to upset another group
    of people. When up-dating the Gurkha TACOS to bring them into line with British recruited soldiers, there had to be a cut-off for retrospective pension rates and that was 1997.

    Little different to when there was a cut-off point in 1975 whereby British soldiers leaving before
    the 22-year mark receive no deferred pensions for their army service.

    The two issues, residency and pensions, have always been firmly tied together, firstly by GAESO
    and latterly by BGWS. The reason being that settlement in UK was far more viable if a
    pension equating to a former British soldier was paid.

    Now that the settlement issue has been won and Maj Dewan's High Court action has been
    dismissed, he has to try another tack.

    In doing so he might well win over the British public with his claims but he's alienated
    his local MP, who has done a lot for Gurkhas in Aldershot, and it seems that Joanna is
    now turning a deaf ear to his calls.

    If Maj Dewan's motives were that altrusitic he would campaign for the government to
    put in more money to the Gurkha Welfare Trust to increase their ability to alleviate the
    lot of ex-Gurkas in Nepal who have low or non-existant pensions.

    I think we would all, apart from the afore-mentioned pensions campaigners, back that.
  8. My my,
    Mercenary's never change.

    They'll work for anyone who pays, ask India, Brunei.
  9. Bloody immigrants. Coming over here, taking our jobs, demanding more benefits.