For the last five months, India has been celebrating and honoring a retired Gurkha soldier (Bishnu Shrestha) who, singlehandedly killed three bandits, wounded eight and drove off another 30. This incident occurred five months ago, and since then Shrestha has been given medals, cash and accolades for his outstanding valor and prowess. The Indian Gurkha regiment he recently retired from persuaded him to return to active duty so he could receive a cash award and a promotion. Bishnu Shrestha father had also served with the same unit, and retired from it 29 years ago.
All this occurred because Bishnu Shrestha was on a train where about forty bandits, pretending to be passengers, suddenly revealed themselves, and, armed with knives, swords and pistols, stopped the train in the jungle, and proceeded to rob the hundreds of passengers. When the bandits reached Shrestha, he was ready to give up his valuables, but then the 18 year old girl sitting next to him was grabbed by the robbers, who wanted to rape her. The girl, who knew Shrestha was a retired soldier, appealed to him for help. So he pulled out the large, curved khukuri knife that all Gurkha soldiers (and many Gurkha civilians) carry, and went after the bandits. In the narrow isle of the train, a trained fighter like Shrestha had the advantage. Although some of the bandits had pistols, they were either fake (a common ploy in India), inoperable, or handled by a man who didn’t want to get too close to an angry Gurkha. After about ten minutes of fighting in the train isles, eleven bandits were dead or wounded, and the rest of them decided to drop their loot (200 cell phones, 40 laptops, lots of jewelry, and nearly $10,000 in cash) and flee. The train resumed its journey promptly, in case the bandits came back, and to get medical aid for the eight bandits who had been cut up by Shrestha (who was also wounded in one hand). Shrestha required two months of medical treatment to recover the full use of his injured hand.