The Kullu district administration on Sunday morning sent three additional Indo -Tibet Border Police (ITBP) rescue teams from Nagar, Jana and Bijli Mahadev to locate eight trekkers who had gone missing near Chanderkhani Pass in Parvati Valley last week.
The missing trekkers, seven of whom are students of the Sant Longowal Institute of Engineering and Technology (SLIET) at Sangrur in Punjab, had reached the area on March 8. They were aided by Bharat Parkash, a former SLIET student hailing from Kullu.
The group lost contact with the police on Friday afternoon, and the district administration learnt about the matter when it was approached by Parkash’s family later that day.
Kullu superintendent of police Padam Chand told Hindustan Times that the three teams, comprising eight soldiers each, left at 5 am on Sunday. “On Sunday morning, a private heli-taxi hired to conduct a recce of the area from the Manali side found footprints again. The search teams have been asked to follow them and locate the missing trekkers,” he said.
Although bad weather is hampering the search ops,hopeful that by evening there might be some breakthrough- PRO,ITBP pic.twitter.com/gOSyVjsBoN— ANI (@ANI_news) March 13, 2016
The district administration had earlier sent two teams after them, but the rescue operation was impeded by heavy rainfall.
“Bad weather is still a big hurdle. If the weather improves, we will be able to use helicopters and heli-taxis to locate them. Local trekkers, experts from the Atal Bihari Vajpayee Institute of Mountaineering and Allied Sports in Manali, and local shepherds are engaged in the rescue operation,” Chand said.
The parents of the missing trekkers want the government to seek the help of the Army and the National Disaster Response Force.