Very little chance of rescuing Indian mountaineer alive: Nepal government

Kathmandu, May 24 (IANS) Nepal's tourism ministry Saturday said that there is very little chance of rescuing alive Indian mountaineer Chhanda Gayen and two Sherpas who have been missing since Monday.

"As soon as we came to know about the incident, Nepal government, local administration, Indian embassy in Kathmandu, Seven Summit Treks Pvt Ltd and relatives and family members of Gayen came together for the rescue bid and search operation which is still under way," Nepal's Ministry of Tourism and Civil Aviation said in a statement.

"Since five days, we have been consistently and tirelessly working for rescue of the missing climbers but it is going to be a very difficult act to trace out the exact situation. We will inform if any positive development takes place during the rescue and search bid," said the statement.

Chhanda Ganyen and two Sherpas went missing following an avalanche on May 19

Local officials and officials involved in the rescue and search operation have abandoned hope that the trio would be found alive and have declared them 'dead' as it is almost five days since they were hit by an avalanche on the slopes of the 8,505-metre Kanchenjunga West peak.

But, according to Nepali law, it is illegal to declare a person dead officially until the body is recovered. Officials suspect that they perished in deep ice-fall which has made it very difficult to trace their exact position.

According to the ministry, the expedition 'Seven Summit Yaluang Khang Expedition-2014', was managed by Seven Summit Treks and Gayen was the team leader.

Gayen, 35, who hails from Kona in India's West Bengal state and possessed passport number, K8126159, is missing along with two Sherpas, Dawa Wangchung, 28, and Temba Sherpa, 23, since 4 p.m. Monday when an avalanche hit them at a height of 7,500 metre when they were climbing Mt Kanchenjunga West, also known as Yalung Khang.

One Tasi Sherpa, who was also accompanying the three missing mountaineers, managed to save his life.

A plane belonging to Fish Tail Air was dispatched on a search and rescue mission Tuesday which continued Saturday morning too, the ministry said.

On Saturday, Tasi was taken to the spot where the trio went missing but could not succeed in tracing them to bad weather, said the ministry.

The ministry also requested the family members of the missing trio to remain calm and have patience.


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