Government's latest decision on Gurkhas very disappointing
24th April 2009
Alok Sharma comments on the Government’s announcement today to introduce a further set of news rules on the eligibility of Gurkha veterans to live in the UK.
Following the Government’s announcement today to introduce a further set of news rules on the eligibility of Gurkha veterans to live in the UK, Alok Sharma, the Conservative Parliamentary Candidate for Reading West commented: “I have been campaigning with our local Gurkhas in Reading to achieve fair settlement rights for the veterans and together we took up to 10 Downing Street a petition signed by over 2,500 local Reading and West Berkshire residents calling on the Government to act fairly. Unfortunately these latest set of rules have been designed to make sure that the vast majority of Gurkha veterans cannot meet the eligibility requirements.”
Alok continued: “I know our local Gurkha veterans in Reading are hugely disappointed by this announcement and it is incredibly sad and frustrating that the Government has failed to recognise the unique contribution the Gurkhas have made over many generations in serving to protect British interests and, in many cases, laying down their lives for Crown and Country. This Government decision is all the more disappointing since last September there was a court ruling which concluded that Gurkha veterans who were refused visas to settle in the United Kingdom because they retired from the regiment before 1997 were treated unlawfully and the policy used to reject them was misleading.”
Alok concluded: “The fight for fair settlement rights will go on but there is no doubt today’s Government announcement is a bitter blow for our local Gurkhas.”