Soldier cited for holding off up to 30 Taliban by himself
Acting Sgt. Dipprasad Pun of the Royal Gurkha Rifles displays his Conspicuous Gallantry Cross.
June 2nd, 2011
09:03 AM ET

Soldier cited for holding off up to 30 Taliban by himself

Britain's newest hero is a Nepali.

Queen Elizabeth II on Wednesday awarded Britain's second-highest award for bravery, the Conspicuous Gallantry Cross, to Acting Sgt. Dipprasad Pun of the Royal Gurkha Rifles.

While stationed as a lone sentry at a checkpoint in Afghanistan's Helmand province on September 17, Pun fended off an attack by up to 30 Taliban fighters.

"There were many Taliban around me," Pun said in an interview with British Forces News. "I thought they are definitely going to kill me. ... I thought before they kill me I have to kill some of them."

During the 15-minute battle, Pun fired more than 400 rounds of ammunition, detonated 17 grenades and a mine and even threw his gun tripod at a Taliban fighter climbing toward his position, according to British Forces News.

"He was just about to climb up there and I hit (him) with my tripod and he fell down again," Pun told British Forces News.

Pun's actions saved the lives of three fellow soldiers at the checkpoint and were the "bravest seen in his battalion over two hard tours in Afghanistan," according to his medal citation.

Pun was not wounded in the firefight.

“That he survived unscathed is simply incredible," his medal citation says. “Throughout Dip’s actions he was under almost constant intense fire. Dip’s courage and gallantry were simply astonishing."

Pun, 31, joined the British military in 2000 and also has served in Bosnia and Kosovo.

Like other Gurkhas, Pun is from Nepal. The Gurkhas were incorporated into British forces after their fighting skill impressed the opposition British during the Nepal Wars of 1814 to 1816. As part of the peace treaty ending that conflict, Gurkhas were admitted into East India Company's army and then into the British military.

Gurkhas recruited solely in Nepal remain Nepalese citizens during their service. Gurkha unit officers are British.

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Filed under: Afghanistan • Military • Nepal • Queen Elizabeth II • United Kingdom • World
soundoff (806 Responses)
  1. JGreen

    Woow , that's amazing

    June 2, 2011 at 11:52 am | Report abuse | Reply
  2. saywhat

    I am sure soldiers from other countries like our own are committing acts of bravery and valor. However that does not detract from this whole bloody craziness going on in Afghanistan.
    Tens of thousands of innocent civilians have died in the past decade in Afghanistan & Pakistan and counting. Thousands of American soldiers also laid their life in this open ended 'war' which is going no where.
    When and how would this madness end?

    June 2, 2011 at 11:56 am | Report abuse | Reply
    • youranidiot

      um..when was the last time any one other than the taliban set off or planted an IED that killed civilians. its funny to listen to idiots who have never been there talk about it as if they knew

      June 2, 2011 at 12:06 pm | Report abuse |
    • George

      It will end when President Trump destroys the Middle East in a nuclear holocaust and gives all Americans free gasoline.

      June 2, 2011 at 12:11 pm | Report abuse |
    • Earnán

      The vast, overwhelming, sickening majority of those "dead civilians" have been murdered by the Taliban.

      Tribal elders who refuse to assist the Taliban? Killed.

      Schoolteachers? Killed.

      Farmers who won't grow opium and turn the profits over to the Taliban? Killed.

      Men who allow their children-especially if they allow their daughters-to go to school? Killed.

      The Taliban are a vicious rabid curse upon Afghanistan. Fighting them and destroying them-even if they hadn't been providing refuge and assistance to bin Ladin and al Qaeda-would be the right thing to do.

      June 2, 2011 at 1:47 pm | Report abuse |
  3. rone

    and of course..they always have ther long curve knife with them at all time. Their trade mark as gurkhas

    June 2, 2011 at 11:57 am | Report abuse | Reply
    • Pliny

      The traditional gurkha knife is called a "kukri".

      Good for slitting islamic throats.

      June 2, 2011 at 12:11 pm | Report abuse |
  4. Kermit Roosevelt

    Though I have to say that the bellhop hat isn't very intimidating. Couldn't he wear some kind of peaked barbarian helmet with horns and perhaps the scalps of his enemies? And while we're at it, how come the reporter didn't ask this guy "What is good in life?"

    June 2, 2011 at 11:58 am | Report abuse | Reply
    • Pliny

      Kermit...unlike you....he is a man.

      June 2, 2011 at 12:14 pm | Report abuse |
    • zukeybadtouch

      I like you. You can come to my house a eff my sister.

      June 2, 2011 at 12:23 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Vic

    Was he a sniper? What weapon/s delivered those 400 rounds w/o jamming? Did it ultimately fail or did he run out of bullets? Is that when he reached for the mine? Did he fling it like a clay disc, or did he still have bullets to shoot it before/after it hit the ground? What is his favorite FPS game? Is there a cure for aspergers syndrome?

    June 2, 2011 at 11:58 am | Report abuse | Reply
  6. Reincarnated former Gurkha Officer

    Sgt Pun live up to the highest traditions and standards of the Gurkha regiment, remember the 200 Spartans!

    June 2, 2011 at 11:59 am | Report abuse | Reply
  7. dawn

    Well done, brave soldier.

    June 2, 2011 at 12:01 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  8. chibuike umeh

    if not that his is a Nepali,i would have ask if it is the same mother that bore him and JACK BAUR

    June 2, 2011 at 12:01 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  9. descarado

    These guys are amazing fighters! Their favorite weapon is their knife. During drinking bouts, they like to pour brandy over the blade of their knife, light it and lick it dry. Most of these guys are 5 foot nothing or less! Fierce fighters!

    June 2, 2011 at 12:02 pm | Report abuse | Reply
    • Fellow_Nepali

      Seems you are yet to see taller ones .. lol, I appreciate your good words though. Thank you.

      June 2, 2011 at 12:20 pm | Report abuse |
  10. thnkfryrslf

    Congrats to this soldier. I was unaware of the relationship that allows Nepalese to serve in the British Armed Forces. Very interesting.

    June 2, 2011 at 12:05 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  11. Eddie

    Viva Nepal !!
    Viva Nepal !!

    June 2, 2011 at 12:06 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  12. Sleeping Beauty

    Well done Pun!!! You are a brave and honorable soldier.

    June 2, 2011 at 12:07 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  13. Bob

    This on the heels of a Gurkha warding off 40 train bandits in India:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bishnu_Shrestha

    June 2, 2011 at 12:10 pm | Report abuse | Reply
    • Mark

      Awesome! Thanks for the link Bob.

      June 2, 2011 at 12:57 pm | Report abuse |
    • ktmusa

      Thanks Bob great article..another bada$$ Gurkha risking his life for others..here is the full story..

      http://www.badassoftheweek.com/shrestha.html

      June 2, 2011 at 3:54 pm | Report abuse |
  14. Trish

    Hey Guys, will you visit HelpFaye.ORG a friend of mine with 2 babies is fighting for her life.... Thanks

    June 2, 2011 at 12:11 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  15. trp48

    http://badassoftheweek.com/pun.html

    June 2, 2011 at 12:13 pm | Report abuse | Reply
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