Toll in the Uttarkashi avalanche rose to 16 as rescue teams retrieved 12 bodies from the site on Thursday morning, the Nehru Institute of Mountaineering said, ANI reported. Twenty-nine trainees are still stranded.
The avalanche hit the Draupadi Danda peak in Uttarkashi, Uttarakhand at 4 am on Tuesday. The peak is located in the Gangotri range of the Garhwal Himalayas at a height of 5,670 metres.
A team of the High Altitude Warfare School on Thursday joined the search and rescue operations with Indo-Tibetan Border Police, State Disaster Response Force, Nehru Institute of Mountaineering and National Disaster Response Force, India Today reported.
Indo-Tibetan Border Police Public Relations Officer Vivek Pandey said that a makeshift helipad has been made for rescue operations, ANI reported.
“Dead bodies are present at base, expecting to bring some of them down today,” he said. “Measures being hampered due to bad weather conditions. Efforts to find those missing on.”
The Uttarkashi district administration has banned trekking and mountaineering activities for the next three days due to a rain alert from the India Meteorological Department.
On Wednesday, 14 mountaineers from the Nehru Institute of Mountaineering were rescued. Savita Kanswal, who became the first Indian woman to climb Mount Everest and Mount Makalu in a record time of just 16 days earlier this year, is among those who died in the calamity.