2 Indian climbers go missing; another frostbitten on Everest

Kathmandu: Two Indian climbers have gone missing on Mount Everest even as nearly 40 climbers including an Indian woman have developed frostbite during this Himalayan climbing season which saw about 400 mountaineers summit the world's highest peak, officials said on Sunday.

Paresh Nath and Goutam Ghosh have been missing since Saturday. They were last seen near the Everest summit, officials said.

A search operation was on to locate the two missing Indian climbers. Earlier, out of four Indian climbers who had gone missing, two were located today, said an official of the Mountaineering Department of Nepal's Tourism Ministry. Meanwhile, Seema Goshwami, who has developed frostbite to her hands and feet at the South Col camp, was unable to move.

Several Sherpa guides carried Goshwami from the highest camp at nearly 8,000 meters to camp two which is located at 6,400 meters. There were attempts to airlift her as her condition was stable.

Nearly 400 climbers have summitted the 8,850-metre high peak since May 11. Some 35-40 climbers suffered frostbite in camp 3 and 4 while attempting to reach the summit or on their descent,said Gyanendra Shrestha, an official of the Mountaineering Department of Nepal's Tourism Ministry.

In the past two days, a Dutch and an Australian mountaineer have died of altitude sickness after scaling Mount Everest, days after an Indian climber lost his life after falling sick while descending Nepal's Dhaulagiri peak. Favorable weather has allowed nearly 400 climbers to reach the summit from Nepal since May 11, but the altitude, weather and harsh terrain can cause problems at any time. Frost bite occurs due to human negligence in the mountain.

The climbers need to shake their hands from time to time to avoid such a situation, said Shrestha.

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