London: A Gurkha soldier who single-handedly
fought off up to 30 Taliban militants in Afghanistan, even
using his gun's tripod when he ran out of bullets, was on Friday
awarded Britain's second highest medal for bravery.
Acting Sergeant Dipprasad Pun used up all of his
ammunition and resorted to using his machine gun tripod to
repel an attack in Afghanistan in September.
The 31-year-old Gurkha, of Ashford, Kent, said he was a
"lucky guy" and very proud to get the Conspicuous Gallantry
Cross, BBC reported.
A total of 136 UK servicemen and women are being
honoured, four posthumously.
Pun was on sentry duty at a checkpoint near Babaji, in
Afghanistan's Helmand province, on September 17 last year when
he spotted insurgents trying to plant a bomb beside the front
Moments later, militants opened fire on the compound from
For more than a quarter of an hour, alone on the roof,
Gurkha Pun fought off an onslaught from rocket-propelled
grenades and AK-47s.
In total, he fired more than 400 rounds, launched 17
grenades and detonated a mine.
At one point, when an insurgent tried to climb up to his
position, his rifle failed and he resorted to throwing his
machine gun tripod to knock him down.
Pun, who is originally from the Nepalese village of Bima,
believed at the time that there were up to 30 attackers.
The citation on his medal - which is only one level below
the Victoria Cross - states that he saved the lives of three
comrades who were inside the checkpoint at the time.
First Published: Friday, March 25, 2011, 21:33