§ Lord Avebury
asked Her Majesty's Government:
Whether it is true that an order applies to Gurkha battalions that "any family, failing to report a pregnancy during the first three months, will be sent back to Nepal 60 days after the birth of the child. Such families will never be allowed back into family lines. Severe disciplinary action will be taken against the soldier"; whether such an order applies to English troops stationed in Hong Kong, and in how many cases in the last three calendar years respectively Gurkha families have been sent back to Nepal, and what disciplinary action was taken in each case against the soldier.
§ The Earl of Avon
An order of the kind described was issued temporarily in 1978, by one Gurkha unit serving in Hong Kong, to encourage the earlier reporting of pregnancies amongst Gurkha families. This was intended to overcome welfare and accommodation problems arising as a result of delays in making pregnancies known in time. The unit order did not represent the policy of the Ministry of Defence and was not put into effect. It has not been in existence for several years and will not be repeated. No family was sent back to Nepal as a result of it and no disciplinary action was taken against any soldier.
No such order applies to any British Army family stationed in Hong Kong.