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regular-article-logo Thursday, 13 June 2024

Arunachal mountaineer goes missing from Mount Kyarisatam

Administration has mobilised both land and aerial search operations to rescue Everester Tapi Mra and his companion Niki Dao

Umanand Jaiswal Guwahati Published 31.08.22, 12:41 AM
Tapi Mra.

Tapi Mra. Twitter/@NabarupG

The Arunachal Pradesh administration has mobilised both land and aerial search operations to rescue Everester Tapi Mra and his companion Niki Dao, both of whom reportedly went missing trying to explore Mount Kyarisatam, one of the highest peaks of the state, between August 22 and August 24.

East Kameng deputy commissioner Pravimal Abhishek Polumatla told The Telegraph on Tuesday that the army has helped us with two choppers and 16 personnel for the aerial operation which “was to be launched today but we could not do so due to adverse weather conditions”.

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“However, we have also mobilised a ground search team comprising army personnel and local mountaineers because weather forecast not great. The search will begin after the army team reaches Seppa (district headquarters) around 11am on Wednesday. We will also keep a close tab on the weather for a window of opportunity to carry out the aerial survey,” Abhishek said.

There has been widespread concern over the safety of the two mountaineers.

The state’s mountaineering and paragliding associations had moved chief minister Pema Khandu to help find the 37-year-old Mra, the first from the frontier state to scale Mount Everest in 2009, and Dao. Mra hails from Upper Siang district.

East Kameng district administration had on Monday convened an emergency meeting to finalise a roadmap to launch the search and rescue operations which will not only require trained personnel but also acclimatised to local conditions.

Mra had said in 2021 that the snow-clad Mount Kyarisatam at 7001 metres are no less challenging than world’s famous peaks and should be tried before undertaking an expedition to the Everest. The peak is located in East Kameng district.

Both Mra and Dao reportedly went incommunicado three days after leaving the base camp, which takes at least 6-day trek from the last village Langchu. They were accompanied by five porters who have returned to their respective homes.

“One of the porters will reach Seppa soon from whom we can find out what exactly happened and then connect the dots and use the information for the search operation,” the DC said.

The official further said they requisitioned army help because two months ago army personnel had done a recce of the area.

“They are familiar with the lay of the land, acclimatised and trained in high-altitude mountaineering. It is going to be a challenging operation, taking a minimum of seven days to reach the base camp — one day to reach Langchu by road and foot and another six days to reach the base camp,” he said.

There has been no contact with the two mountaineers after they moved to the forward camp from the base camp, the official added.

The search for the mountaineers will be the second major one since July in the frontier state full of dense forests, rivers and mountains.

The search was for 19 labourers from Assam working on road project. They lost their way after fleeing the construction site in Arunachal’s Kurung Kumey district. Only 10 were found alive.

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