Kathmandu, Feb 11 (PTI) Nepal has banned two Indian climbers and their team leader from carrying out any mountaineering expeditions in the country for six years after a probe found that they faked their Mt Everest summit in 2016.
Indian mountaineers Narender Singh Yadav and Seema Rani Goswami received expedition certificates from the Tourism Department during the spring season of 2016 without successfully climbing the world's highest mountain.
Both the climbers received the certificates of climbing the 8,848.86m (29,032 ft) mountain by producing fake documents and pictures to claim their summit, according to a press release issued by the Ministry of Tourism, Culture and Civil Aviation on Thursday.
Their certificates have been revoked, the ministry said. After receiving a complaint about the fake ascent, the ministry had formed a committee to investigate the matter.
The investigation has confirmed that both of them had obtained certificates by giving false details, it said.
They have been banned from ascending any mountain in Nepal for six years. The ban will be effective starting May 20, 2016, it said.
Their Indian team leader Naba Kumar Phukon, who led the expedition, has also been banned for six years starting May 20, 2016.
In New Delhi, Sports Ministry sources said that Yadav, who was recommended for the Tenzing Norgay Award last year, will not be bestowed with the honour.
'Narender Singh Yadav issue is over from our side. The inquiry initiated by the ministry found that he faked about climbing Mount Everest. He submitted fake pictures,' a sports ministry official told PTI.
'So, his name had been withdrawn from the 2020 Tenzing Norgay Award list. He will not get it.' Yadav was initially recommended for India's highest adventure sports award but his name was withheld after media reports emerged of the possibility of him submitting fake documents.
A committee, which was constituted to investigate the matter, had found the documents submitted by Yadav to be fake.
The Nepal government has also imposed a fine of Rs 50,000 on the Seven Summit Treks Pvt Ltd, the agency which organised the expedition for the Indian nationals. The ministry has also warned Pawan Kumar Ghimire, the liaison officer of the team, not to repeat such mistakes in the future. The ministry has also decided to impose a fine of Rs 10,000 on Nga Dawa Sherpa, the climbing supporter during the expedition.
Sherpa had filed false documents claiming that Yadav had successfully climbed Mt Everest. This is not the first time that climbers have been confirmed of faking the summit of Mt Everest.
Dinesh and Tarakeshwari Rathod, an Indian couple, who were part of a different expedition in the spring of 2016, had also claimed that they had scaled Mt Everest and obtained the expedition certificate by submitting false details.
Their climbing recognition was also revoked by the DoT.
Aiming to reduce such activities, the government has been dwelling on installing GPS tracking system in the mountains.However, no progress has been made on this front yet. PTI SBP PMS AKJ PMS PMS