KATHMANDU, May 24: Four dead bodies of climbers that had emerged from under the Everest ice have been removed from the mountain on Thursday.
Sherpas involved in the ongoing Everest clean-up campaign brought the bodies down to the Everest Base Camp and they were airlifted to Kathmandu-based Tribhuvan University Teaching Hospital for autopsy, according to officials involved in the campaign.
The campaign was launched by the government in collaboration with private sector organizations.
Citing statements of Sherpas, officials said the bodies had emerged recently at Icefall, Camp II, Lhotse face and South Col with the melting of the snow on the mountain. Both the identity of the deceased climbers and the timing of their death remain undisclosed.Dandu Raj Ghimire, the director general at the Department of Tourism, said once the autopsies are performed, the bodies will be handed over to the families or the embassies concerned. If the families or embassies don't claim the bodies then the bodies will be cremated in Nepal.Due to rising temperatures in recent years, melting glaciers in the Himalayas have been exposing dead bodies entombed in the ice and waste dumped by mountaineers.
As part of the mega Everest cleanup campaign a team of experienced Sherpas has been mobilized to remove dead bodies and waste piled up above the base camp of the world's highest mountain.
Twelve Sherpas hired by the Sagarmatha Pollution Control Committee are working to remove the bodies and waste.
The campaign involving government, private sector and organizations working for the welfare of the mountaineering community started this year for the first time.
Nepal Army, which is mandated to collect the waste below the Everest Base Camp, has already started its cleanup campaign from April 14. So far, the army has already lifted several tons of non bio-degradable waste from the region.
About 300 climbers have died on Everest since 1922, the year when the expedition started. It is not clear how many of those dead bodies are still on Everest. Expedition companies try their best to bring the dead bodies down on their own. But they give up their quest if bringing the dead bodies is not possible in one or two attempts.
Both foreign climbers and Sherpas have been complaining that the bodies are emerging from ice due to the effect of global warming. The emergence of dead bodies from ice, according to the climbers, haunts them while struggling to walk in the thin air