Queens Gurkha Officers

Discussion in 'Military History and Militaria' started by ibilola, Dec 21, 2005.

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  1. Do Queens Gurkha Officers (QGOs) have full officer status in the British Army? Can they for example command British Troops?
  2. Unless things have changed dramatically in the past couple of decades QGOs do not command British troops, their commission is confined to the Brigade of Gurkhas. They rank below 2/LT.
    QGOs command platoons and fill appointments similar to LE officers in Brit Bns, though not, if memory serves, Quarter Master. As a courtesy British soldiers saluted them and addressed them as Sahib, maybe they still do.

    There are Nepalese regular officers in the Brigade of Gurkhas who have graduated from Sandhurst, one of whom, I recall, won the sword of honour in 1976, they may command Brit soldiers and rate the deference and compliments due a 'Queens' commissioned officer.
  3. BuggerAll

    BuggerAll LE Reviewer Book Reviewer

    There are (or where) Queens Commisioned Ghurka Officers who are more like LE officers. I've seen QGO in the Ghurka Signals and Transport and Engineers and as these are part of otherwise British Regiments the QGO's must command BORs from time to time.

    As a 2Lt and Lt in Hong Kong I was told to make bloody certain I got my salutes into QGO Captains and the Ghurka Major before they saluted me, and as mentioned above the correct form of address was 'sahib', both up and down.
  5. Officer Cadets rank below everyone! :)
  6. But we're so sweet and naive you can't help but like us.
  7. So The Gurkha Major is junior in rank to a 2Lt, but senior in status and authority.

    The Indian Army has equivalent ranks to the QGOs. They are known as Junior Commissioned Officers (JCOs) and have their own JCOs mess. The ranks are Naib Subedar, Subedar and the senior rank, Subedar Major (the latter equivalent to the Gurkha Major).

    Both QGOs and JCOs were called Viceroy Commissioned Officers in the pre-1947 Indian Army.
  8. As a Crab when at TDBG Sek Kong I always saluted QGOs as I was told they were only commissioned after having been in the ranks fifteen years, always called 'em Sahib. Respected 'em.
  9. Are QGOs members of the Officers Mess, or do they, like the JCOs in the Indian Army, have their own messes?
  10. Further information on QGOs from:



    14. Some of the ranks and titles in use in British Gurkhas Nepal can be confusing to people who have not previously served with Gurkhas. The Brigade of Gurkhas retains some of the rank structure and commissions of the Indian Army. Each of the terms is explained below:

    a. British Officer (BO). British Officers, who carry out the main command duties of Brigade units are the same as their fellow officers in the rest of the British Army.

    b. Sandhurst Commissioned Gurkha Officers. Although not an official term, "Sandhurst Commissioned Gurkha Officers" is used to describe those officers of the Brigade who have attended Sandhurst. They are equal in every respect to other officers of the British Army and will have been commissioned as Second Lieutenants.

    c. Queen's Gurkha Officer (QGO). Queen's Gurkha Officers fill command and specialist appointments at Regimental Duty. They have all progressed through the ranks and are entitled to the same respect and compliments as British Officers with whom they share equal status and seniority according to rank. The senior rank is Major (QGO) and in major units the senior Queen's Gurkha Officer is referred to as the Gurkha Major (GM). He is the commander's right hand man and adviser on Gurkha religious and cultural matters. There is no equivalent to these ranks in the remainder of the army and they stem from the old Viceroy's commission of the Indian Army. Queen's Gurkha Officers sometimes have their own Mess and referred to by all ranks as "Saheb".

    d. Short Service Commission Late Entry (Gurkha) (SSC LE (G)). SSC LE (G) Officers are Queen’s Gurkha Officers who have been selected, due to special merit, for further promotion and a different commission. They have the same entitlement as British Officers and are addressed in the same manner. They live in the British Officers’ Mess or British Married Quarters as appropriate. They can be compared to Late Entry Commissioned officers and frequently carry out similar tasks. There only ever 5 SSC LE (G) officers in the Brigade at any one time.
  11. out of curiousity is this relevant to all capbadges i.e Queens Gurkha Signals
  12. RP578

    RP578 LE Book Reviewer

    They have (or at least did have 5 years ago) their own mess.

    There also used to exist another form of Gurkha officer termed a Gurkha Commissioned Officers (GCO), who were direct equivelants of our own LE officers. I believe the term GCO has been dropped for a few years now.
  13. Do Gurkha battalions have RSMs? I've never read or heard of one (John Masters, Byron Farwell etc.), but maybe I just didn't pick it up.
  14. Yes they do. Addressed as 'RSM Saheb' -see below:


    Mutual respect, in particular to your elders, is very important. Gurkhas always respect their parents and never call them by their names. They tend to give similar respect to others by addressing them as Daju (elder brother) or Didi (elder sister). Depending upon the relative differences in age, an older person is addressed as uncle or aunt, grandfather or grandmother.

    The name is only used if the person is either a child or very close friend of theirs. Occasionally, names are used to be intentionally rude to the person or when address them in anger. In order to avoid such ambiguity and disrespect in the army they use Ranks or Numbers when addressing soldiers such as…Maj Saheb, Cpl Guruji or 55 Guruji.

    Gurkhas Officers

    Addressing senior Gurkha officers: GM Saheb, 2IC/SQGO Saheb
    Rest of the Gurkha officers: Use their initials e.g. L.B. Saheb or B.B. Saheb

    (The Gurkha Major is the most senior Gurkha Officer in any Gurkha unit. All Gurkhas and British treat him with utmost respect. He is the advisor to the Commanding Officer on all Gurkha matters)


    RSM 'RSM Saheb'
    CSM/SSM 'Sgt Major'
    CSgt Colour
    Sgt Sgt Guruji/Sgt K.B. etc.

    Cpl/LCpl Cpl Guruji, Cpl Ram (first name), 3242 Guruji

    Rfn/Spr/Sig/Pte 4836, Krishna (first name)

    Addressing Gurkha ladies:

    The GM’s wife Didi (the CO saheb may address her as ‘Bahini’)

    Addressing the rest of the Gurkha ladies depends on BO/BOR’s age. Normally it is complementary to address them as ‘Bahini’.
  15. Gurkhas can also be awarded Honorary Rank in a similar fashion to the modern Indian Army.


    Honorary Rank.

    'On retirement, exemplary service can be rewarded with the grant of honorary rank. Warrant Officers may retire as Honorary Queen's Gurkha Officers. Queen's Gurkha Officers may be awarded Honorary Major or Honorary Captain, according to their service rank on retirement.'