The memories of the Truncheon brings back the history during the Indian Mutiny when the Simoor Ghorkha Batallion who eventually became 2nd King Edward VII’s Gurkha Rifles received it as an award for its service in the siege of Delhi in 1857-1858. During the siege they fought together with the 60th Rifles, unfortunately there were many official casualties numbering 327 deaths and 490 wounded.
The Queen’s Truncheon is described as a piece of craftsmanship carved in Victorian age. It is a ceremonial baton or staff made of silver and bronze carried by the Royal Gurkha Rifles and commensurated the Colour. The head portion symbolizes the minaret of Dehli Palace consisting of three Gurkhas in standing position upholding the Royal Queen’s Crown above them. Inscribed to it is “Main Picqet Hindoo Rao’s House, Delhi 1857. Considered as sacred upon which new recruits swear allegiance to the Regiment and the Crown. The Truncheon was designed to be separated apart in 5 portions and can be assembled to stand as one for the strategic purpose of safekeeping in separate knapsacks of five Gurkha armies in battle.
Her Majesty Queen Victoria was gratified with the Batallion’s exceptional duty during the Indian Mutiny, she granted it a third colour inscribed ‘Delhi’ in English, Hindi, and Persian. And this has added to their existing Queen’s Colour and a Black Regimental Colour distinctions. The rank and file titled as Simoor Batallion was then abolished and renamed Sirmoor Rifle Regiment. They were then granted to wear the scarlet donned to their uniforms just like the 60th Rifles at Dehli, and their affiliation still linger till today.
Rifle Regiments were not allowed to carry Colours and their privilege of acquiring it was not granted, so to preserve the distinction, Her Majesty Queen Victoria made a way to replace the third Colour to Truncheon. Fabricated by Messrs Hunt and Roskell, this 6-feet high Truncheon was relinquished to the Regiment by the Commander-in-Chief in 1863 during the ceremonial parade and revered with Royal Salute by the Troops of Western Army.
Eversince the Truncheon was handed over by the Queen to the Royal Gurkha Rifles, utmost respect and reverence has been accorded to it and new recruits are obligated to be sworn in the Truncheon’s presence. It was in 1953 shortly after the Coronation of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II, that this Truncheon was presented and named as The Queen’s Truncheon.