Four trekkers missing near Kedarnath located after 48-hour search operation
Vineet Kumar, an SDRF official, said that the trekkers were located by the Triyuginarayan village chief on Thursday morning.Updated: Jul 16, 2020 13:59 IST
Four trekkers, who went missing from Vasuki Tal area near Kedarnath in Uttarakhand, on Tuesday afternoon, were located on Thursday morning by a village chief, state government officials said.
The trekkers were located after a 48-hour extensive search operation conducted by the State Disaster Response Force (SDRF), including the use of a helicopter.
Vineet Kumar, an SDRF official, said that the trekkers were located by the Triyuginarayan village chief on Thursday morning.
“We have just learned from the district control room that the Triyuginarayan village chief located four men in the hilly areas near the village. They were identified as the missing trekkers and are being brought down now,” said Kumar.
On Tuesday afternoon, SDRF officials came to know from Kedarnath police authorities that they had not received any update on the location of four trekkers, who went on a hike near Vasuki Tal. Though a search team was dispatched, they couldn’t locate the missing trekkers due to inclement weather.
On Wednesday, Tripti Bhatt, commandant, SDRF, sent three teams for an extensive search operation.
One team, comprising five SDRF officials, two police officials, and two porters, was sent on the Kedarnath-Triyuginarayan route. A second team, consisting of five SDRF and district disaster management officers, was sent on the Sonprayag Munkutia-Vasuki Tal route, and the third team, headed by Vijender Kudiyal, conducted an aerial survey.
The trekkers were identified as Himanshu Gurung, Harsh Bhandari, Mohit Bhatt, and Jagdish Bisht.
This is not the first time trekkers have gone missing in the Himalayan state in the last two years.
Last September, a Hungarian mountaineer, Peter Wittek (37), had gone missing during an expedition to 7,120-metre high Mount Trishul located in Garhwal Himalayas in Chamoli district.
The missing mountaineer was part of the six-member international mountaineering expedition to Mount Trishul held between September 13 and October 8.
Last June, eight mountaineers, heading for the summit near Nanda Devi East in Uttarakhand’s Pithoragarh district, met with an accident during an avalanche.
Nanda Devi is the second-highest mountain in the country and the 23rd-highest peak in the world.
Later, Indo-Tibetan Border Police (ITBP) personnel retrieved the bodies of seven mountaineers and one person is missing to date.