New Delhi: An 18-member Border Security Force (BSF) team on Tuesday left for a mountaineering expedition to scale Mount Manaslu, the eighth-highest mountain in the world at 8,163 meters (26,775 feet) in Nepal.
Of the team, 15 are core members who will scale the Mt Manaslu and the other three are admin team members.
The 18 members including climbers, support staff with medical officers are participating in this expedition. The team is an amalgamation of 15 highly experienced climbers with many successful ascents to their credit and newly inducted climbers whose skills are yet to be tested at this height.
The team is being led by Padma Shri Loveraj Singh Dharamshaktu, Deputy Commandant. The officer is the only mountaineer in our country who has scaled Mt Everest seven times.
For the first time in the history of BSF, two women BSF personnel will also attempt to scale the 8,163-meter-high peak with this expedition.
BSF Director General Nitin Agrawal flagged off the expedition team from the force's headquarters here in the national capital.
While flagging off the mountaineering team, BSF DG said the aim of the expedition is "to pay reverence to the mountain of the spirit by hoisting Tricolour and BSF flag on Mt Manaslu with Clean Himalaya - Save Glacier and Ham Fit toh India Fit campaign".
Mt Manaslu is the eighth-highest mountain in the world at 8,163 meters (26,775 ft) above sea level. It is in the Mansiri Himal, in the west-central part of Nepal.
In a statement, the BSF said, for the "Seema Prahari, the pursuit of adventure and the allure of the unknown have become intrinsic to their daily lives."
"Mountaineering epitomizes this spirit, offering an unparalleled platform for the development of essential qualities such as leadership, camaraderie, discipline, a sense of responsibility, confidence, and, above all, the ability to perform efficiently under extreme adverse climatic conditions," it said.
Notably, BSF's mountaineering prowess includes two successful ascents of Mount Everest in 2006 and 2018, the formidable Mt Kanchanjunga in 2008, Mt Lhotse in 2021, and 43 other Himalayan peaks.
"Adhering to the sacred precept of keeping the mighty Himalayas pristine and trash-free, our dedicated team members will undertake the responsibility of collecting waste also from higher camps, ranging from heights of 19,000 feet to 26,500 feet, on their descent. The collected waste will then be transported to Kathmandu for proper disposal," said the BSF in the statement.
"This conscientious campaign aims to spread a powerful message of environmental preservation and the prevention of global warming to neighbouring countries while sensitizing fellow mountaineers and trekkers to the "Swachh Bharat - Clean Himalaya” and “Ham fit to India Fit" initiative."
On September 15, the team will reach Nepal and then at Manaslu base camp on September 25. The expedition is expected to start on October 3. (ANI)