Sherpa goes naked on top of the world

Lakpa Tharke Sherpa stood naked on the summit of Everest in sub-zero temperatures.
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Updated on May 27, 2006 12:12 PM IST
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None | ByPress Trust of India, Kathmandu

A Nepalese sherpa stripped and stood naked on the summit of Everest in sub-zero temperatures for three minutes, sparking an immediate row over defiling the sacred mountain.

The Nepal Mountaineering Association condemned the feat by Lakpa Tharke Sherpa, 25, on the world's highest mountain, which is known as Sagarmatha and like most Himalayan peaks has a religious significance to many Nepalese.

His team told expedition organisers of his world-topping strip on Wednesday by satellite telephone and said they had taken photographs of the shivering Sherpa.

"Lakpa Tharke Sherpa stood naked for about three minutes after reaching the summit on Wednesday," Ishwori Poudel, managing director of the Himalayan Guides Nepal Trek and Expeditions, said.

NMA president Ang Tshering Sherpa said it was up to the government to consider whether they should take action.

"It's very shocking news because Mount Everest is regarded as a Goddess Mother of the Earth to the Nepali people," he said. "If some of these people stand on the Goddess mountain naked, then it's not appropriate."

He said temperatures in cloudy weather could drop as low as minus 25 Celsius and only rising to minus 7C under the sun -- and if the wind died down.

Some of the mountains in the Himalayan range in Nepal are off limits to climbers because of their religious significance.

The tourism ministry said it had not heard about Sherpa's chilling feat.

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