Darjeeling: Twelve days after an avalanche struck Namgia Dogri area of Kinnaur district in Himachal Pradesh, rescue teams have finally managed to trace the body of Jammu and Kashmir Rifles jawan Govind Bahadur Chettri.
Chhettri, a resident of Binnaguri in Jalpaiguri district of West Bengal, had been missing along with four other jawans since February 22 after the avalanche struck the area.
Sources in the Kinnaur district administration said that the body of Chhettri was found under a thick blanket of snow. “The body is being sent to the Army camp at Pooh for postmortem after which it would be sent to the jawan’s native place. Search operation is going on a war footing,” sources added.
Over 300 men of the Army, the Indo-Tibetan Border Police (ITBP), the police and border forces are engaged in retrieving the bodies of the remaining three jawans -- Videsh Chand, Arjun Kumar and Nitin Rana. Three days ago, the body of Rishi, a resident of Nalagarh in Solan district, was recovered. Search operations have been severely hit by bad weather.
Many mountaineers from the area are also involved in the search operations where specially-trained rescue dogs, rock drills and chain saws have been deployed.
A lot of fresh snow had accumulated at the avalanche site, 350 km from the state capital. Fresh snow has made trekking to the area a risky proposition.
As per the Himachal Pradesh state government, two separate parties of the Army and ITBP were patrolling Namgia Dogri when the avalanche hit the area.
Five ITBP troopers were also injured in the disaster.