Himalayan mountains and climate change
A majestic view of Mt Kanchenjunga captured from East Sikkim  Credit: Robin Gurung

Gangtok: In the purview of the backlash in Sikkim following the Union ministry of home affairs’ (MHA) notification allowing mountaineering expedition on Mt Kanchenjunga along with 23 other peaks in the state, chief minister PS Golay wrote to Amit Shah to immediately de-list them from the notification.

Golay also held a meeting at Tashiling Secretariat on Monday with ecclesiastical minister Sonam Lama, chief secretary AK Shrivastava, home secretary and tourism secretary regarding the issue. The chief minister along with Lama may call on the Union home affairs minister for following up on the issue.

The chief secretary appraised the CM about the action taken by him pertaining to opening of the mountain peaks for mountaineering and trekking. He informed that the letter has already been issued to the Union home affairs secretary to withdraw the decision of opening of 24 peaks permitted for mountaineering/tracking, which is of grave concern to the government and the people of Sikkim.

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Likewise, former Indian football skipper Bhaichung Bhutia also called on Union sports & youth affairs minister Kiren Rijiju at his office on August 23 and requested him not to open expedition on Mt Kanchenjunga and other peaks of Sikkim since they have religious sentiments attached to them. To this, Rijiju gave a positive response. “I fully agree and will ensure that the local religious sentiments are respected while conducting any adventure and sports event,” he tweeted.

Sikkim MP Indra Hang Subba also extended his support to the Sikkimese people in this context and assured to take this with the higher authorities at the Centre. DB Chauhan, president of Sikkim BJP, also informed that they have written a letter to PMO and MHA respecting the sentiments of the Sikkimese and assured that the Centre will take the decision in favour of Sikkim and its people.

Meanwhile, the governing council of IMF has taken a decision not to issue any permit to (scale) the peaks in Sikkim which are under the category of sacred peaks, including Mt Kanchenjunga, despite being officially opened.

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