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Thursday, Aug 22, 2019

2 Delhi men among 3 killed during Shrikhand yatra in Himachal’s Kullu

It appears that the pilgrims died due to hypothermia and lack of oxygen at high altitude. However, police said the exact cause will be known after postmortem.

delhi Updated: Jul 29, 2019 08:17 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times, New Delhi
Kusum Lata (R), wife of Atma Ram who died during the Shrikhand Mahadev yatra in Kullu, at Delhi’s Seelampur on Sunday.
Kusum Lata (R), wife of Atma Ram who died during the Shrikhand Mahadev yatra in Kullu, at Delhi’s Seelampur on Sunday. (Amal KS/HT)
         

Three pilgrims, two of them from Delhi, died during the Shrikhand yatra in Himachal Pradesh’s Kullu district apparently due to lack of oxygen on Saturday, police said.

The deceased have been identified as Upender Saini, 40, of Khalini locality of Shimla town, Kewalnand Bhagat, 59, and Atma Ram, 66, both residents of Delhi.

The trio had embarked on the pilgrimage on July 25 and collapsed while returning after paying obeisance at 5,227m Shirkhand Mahadev peak.

Upender died near Kunsha , Kewalnand died near Nainsarovar while Atma Ram died near Bhimbh, said Kullu superintendent of police Gaurav Singh.

It appears that the pilgrims died due to hypothermia and lack of oxygen at high altitude, police said. However, the exact cause will be known after the postmortem, the SP said, adding that teams have been sent to retrieve the bodies, which will be brought to Nirmand by Monday.

The annual yatra began on July 15. The pilgrimage was halted for two days on July 18 after a glacier broke off in which four pilgrims were injured and 60 others were stranded.

The administration initially granted permission to continue the yatra till Parvati Bagh, and fully resumed on July 20 after the on-duty field staff gave clearance report.

The yatra officially came to an end on July 25.

In 2018, four pilgrims died out of which three died due to respiratory problems and one due to sickness.

Shrikhand yatra is one of the toughest pilgrimages as the trek to the shrine is covered with snow and glaciers and passes through steep slopes and rocky cliffs.

Trek starts from Jaon village of Kullu district and it takes about three days to complete the trek. More than 2,000 people had registered themselves to visit the shrine this year.

First Published: Jul 29, 2019 08:17 IST

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