Gurkhas who fought for the British Army deserve equal pension rights.
I share the anger at the injustice of the old Gurkha Pension Scheme (GPS), which sees Gurkha veterans receive between a third to a half of a full army pension. These heroes have fought bravely for the UK for decades, and the GPS is an insult to their sacrifice.
As you may know, in 2007, the then Labour Government reformed the Gurkha pension arrangements so that any Gurkha soldier who served on or after 1 July 1997 could transfer from the GPS to the regular Armed Forces Pension Scheme (AFPS). The same Labour Government also created the right for Gurkhas to settle in the UK.
However, these reforms did not help the Gurkhas who had served before 1 July 1997, including those that fought in the Second World War. I believe that it is just and right that this omission is addressed, and all Gurkha soldiers are able to transfer to the AFPS.
Stephen Morgan MP, the Shadow Minister for the Armed Forces, has met with Gurkha Satyagraha, a group representing Gurkha veterans, and will be writing to the Secretary of State for Defence, Ben Wallace, in support of their pension rights.
Stephen acts for the whole Opposition on this issue, and I can assure you that my Opposition Colleagues and I are ready to support action in Parliament to hold the Government accountable for its promise made two years ago to address this injustice.