Dehradun, July 3 (IANS) The Indian Air Force’s Cheetah helicopters on Wednesday morning airlifted bodies of seven mountaineers, who went missing in May, from the western ridge of the Nanda Devi East peak in Uttarakhand.
“The bodies, which were recovered at 18,000-18,900 feet height last month, were brought down to 15,600 feet on Tuesday from where they were airlifted this morning,” Indo-Tibetan Border Police (ITBP) sources said.
The Cheetah helicopters brought the bodies to the Munsiyari base camp 1 from where they were taken the Pithoragarh district headquarters.
Later, all the seven bodies were handed over to the Uttarakhand Police for further investigations, District Magistrate Pithoragarh Vijay Jogdande said. After the panchnama and other formalities, the bodies were sent to the Sushila Tiwari Government Hospital at Haldwani in Nainital district for post-mortem.
“None of bodies show any decay as they remained buried in the snow all this while,” said an ITBP official who monitored the entire operation.
An eight-member team, including seven foreign mountaineers and one liaison officer from the Indian Mountaineering Foundation, went missing while on their way to the Nanda Devi East peak on May 25.
The mountaineering team was led by well known British mountaineer Martin Moran, who had already scaled the peak twice in the past.
An ITBP search team recovered seven bodies tied together on June 23. The search for the eighth mountaineer was abandoned as inclement weather as hampered the operation.