Three soldiers recovered nine months after avalanche in northern India

Three soldiers recovered nine months after avalanche in northern India

Nine months after a devastating avalanche in northern India’s Leh Ladakh, the bodies of three soldiers have been recovered.

The incident took place at Mount Kun in Ladhak and the video went viral on July 10.

Visuals showed the soldiers searched relentlessly, digging through snow-covered terrain to find their missing comrades. With each shovel of snow, they meticulously examined every crevice, braving harsh conditions and treacherous landscapes. The task was grueling, requiring immense physical and mental endurance, but their determination never wavered as they sought to recover the bodies buried beneath the snow.

On October 8 of the previous year, 38 soldiers were caught in an avalanche, leading to the immediate rescue of most but leaving one confirmed dead and three missing. Despite extensive search and rescue operations, it wasn’t until recently that the bodies of the missing soldiers were found.

Brigadier S.S. Shekhawat, Commandant of the High Altitude Warfare School (HAWS), led the challenging mission to recover the bodies. Describing it as the most demanding mission of his career, Brigadier Shekhawat explained the extreme conditions the team faced. “We excavated continuously for nine days at an altitude of 18,700 feet, working 10-12 hours a day and removing tons of snow,” he recounted.

Despite the physical and mental toll, Brigadier Shekhawat expressed a profound sense of satisfaction upon the mission’s completion. “It has been the toughest mission of my life, physically, mentally, and emotionally. But I am content that we could bring them back,” he stated.

The fallen soldiers are being honored with full military rites. One of the soldiers, Rahul, has already been cremated with full military honors, while the bodies of Thakur and Gautam are being sent to their families for the final rites they deserve.

Brigadier Shekhawat, who has summited Mount Everest three times, was awarded the Kirti Chakra for his leadership in one of the Indian Army’s most arduous missions.

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