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Arunachal’s mountaineer Tapi Mra goes ‘missing’ in Mt Kyarisatam

The location is very inaccessible, and it takes approximately six days of a foot march from the last village to reach the base camp.

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Itanagar: Ace mountaineer Tapi Mra, the first Arunachalee to scale the world’s highest peak, Mount Everest, in 2009, has been ‘missing’ for more than a week while on a ‘mission’ to explore the snow-capped Mount Kyarisatam, one of the highest peaks in Arunachal Pradesh’s East Kameng district.

“Tapi Mra, Adventure Promotion Officer (APO), Directorate of Youth Affairs, Govt of Arunachal Pradesh has taken up an expedition on self-request basis to Mt Kyarisatam, situated in East Kameng district,” the Deputy Commissioner of the district, Pravimal Abhishek Polumatla said.

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Confirming receipt of the information that the expedition party has not returned or communicated for several days, the DC said, “Immediately efforts have been initiated with local people to locate the base camp and gather information.

“The location is very inaccessible, and it takes approximately six days of a foot march from the last village to reach the base camp. (Since it is raining), only aerial recce and rescue operation will be feasible subject to weather conditions,” he said.

The DC requested the State Government’s Civil Aviation Secretary to “take up the matter on an urgent basis” with the Air Force Station at Tezpur (Assam) for conducting an aerial search and rescue operation.

Meanwhile, State Disaster Management Secretary Dani Salu quoting the East Kameng DC said that one team has been sent to Langchu, the last village, to get any information regarding the return of porters from the base camp with information on Tapi Mra. “We are expecting to get the info by 7.30 pm tonight,” the Secretary said.

Further, a land route search and rescue team has been planned with three mountaineers and 15 porters, and logistics are being arranged today. They will leave tomorrow early morning to reach the last village. From there, the Base camp (place of incident) will be a 6 days trek, he said.

“If any positive info is received tonight, the mission will be modified,” the DC said earlier while adding that “DA will also place requisition for aerial recce and rescue ops if weather permits. It’s raining and cloudy in the mountains right now.”

In the meantime, the DC issued an ‘order’ asking the Circle Officer of Sawa, Yomgam Marde (APCS) to proceed to village Veo-Venia, the last road head point, on Tuesday along with mountaineer Tame Bagang and the team. 

He has also been asked to receive the logistics required for the rescue operation of Tapi Mra from DDMO, Seppa and see off the rescue team from there.

Earlier, social worker Vijay Sonam, who also heads the Paragliding Association of Arunachal Pradesh, while informing that the Everester Tapi Mra has not returned to his base camp since the last 7 days, requested Chief Minister Pema Khadu to send an NDRF team for search and rescue operation.

He also informed that Mra is accompanied by one Puroik boy to the peak. Other 5 porters are waiting at the base camp and one person from the team has come back to Yakli Puroik village to pass the information.

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