Mr Clegg said: "This is an immense victory on a series of fronts: for the rights of Gurkhas who have been waiting so long for justice, a victory for Parliament, a victory for decency." He added that it was "the kind of thing people want this country to do".
Mr Cameron said it was "embarrassing" for the prime minister because his efforts to strike a "shoddy deal" with Labour rebels had failed.
Yet now the Gurkhas could well be for the chop under the Coalition. The Observer reports that they are likely to be sacrificed as part of the MoD cuts needed to make a like-for-like Trident replacement possible.
Patrick Mercer, a Tory MP and a former army officer, said: "The first people to go will be the Brigade of Gurkhas, probably in their entirety. In the past, the Gurkhas' existence was guaranteed by the fact they are cheaper to run than British troops, and that there was a shortage of British troops.
"Recent changes mean they are now just as expensive, and recruitment is extremely healthy at the moment. I am afraid the writing is on the wall."
Ironically, Clegg and Cameron's backing for the Lumley campaign may have sealed the Gurkhas fate, as the report suggests that their Coalition government is now likely to use the increased costs of fairer terms for the Gurkhas to argue that the Gurkhas have become unaffordable.
(However, equal pay and pensions was the policy of the last government after 1997, whose record on the Gurkhas was considerably better than reputed, as Dominic Lawson set out; the central demand of the Lumley campaign was to extend the right of veterans to settle in the UK).