Teenagers still missing in Langtang forest

Kathmandu, January 19

Two teenagers, who left for Gosaikunda, Rasuwa, for hiking from Kathmandu, have been missing for the last two days in the thick snow-covered forest area of Langtang.

Japan Tamang, 19 and Yangul Sherpa, 19, resident of Suntakhan in Gokarneshwor Municipality had gone for hiking in Gosaikunda on January 13. They have been reportedly missing since January 17. Last time, Tamang had called his sister Sushmita Tamang on mobile phone at 5:18pm, asking her to credit his mobile balance.

According to Sushmita, her brother had informed her that he and his friend were lost in some forest area. Sushmita has not been able to contact her brother after that. Acting on the missing complaint lodged by Sushmita, police traced the last location of the mobile phone used by Japan. As per the location of the mobile, police have concluded that they might have gone missing in Langtang National Park, Rasuwa.  The area receives heavy snowfall at this time of the year.

District Administration Office, Rasuwa, launched the search operation yesterday, but it was not easy to deploy police personnel due to heavy snow in the area. Thus, it decided to hire a chopper for the search operation in the area, but that was not helpful for the search operation. Intensifying the search operation today, a Simrik Air helicopter was also used along with dozens of police personnel from Rasuwa and Sindhupalchowk and some Sherpa rescuers, but the missing teenagers could not be found.

Chief District Officer of Rasuwa Arjun Bhandari said, “We are searching for the teenagers in jungle area that lies between two local rivers — Hundi and Tandi. Our search team and locals have advised us that the duo must have been lost somewhere in that area, but we have not been able to found any clue yet.” Bhandari said the area had received some four feet thick layer of snow and the minimum temperature recorded in the area was minus 19 degree Celsius.

Japan and Yangul had moved towards Gosaikunda through Sindhupalchok district.

But as they reached Fedi they were stuck there for two days following the heavy rain and snowfall. They reportedly stayed at a hotel named ‘Red Panda’ until they made up their mind to return to Kathmandu on the third day.

“But they chose not to return through the same route so they took a new route to enter Kathmandu through Nuwakot district, which was a wrong decision,” CDO Bhandari said. The locals in Fedi informed that they were seen traveling on a road towards Ghang Fedi in Nuwakot district on January 17.