Two Nepalis killed in Himachal Pradesh blizzard, three injured

KATHMANDU: Two Nepalis died while three others were rescued after they were trapped in a blizzard in Kullu district in Himachal Pradesh of India, on Friday evening.

The deceased have been identified as Bipra Pokharel from Kathmandu and Santosh Ayer from Kanchanpur while others who have survived the avalanche are Nitesh Pradhan, Bikash Kandel and Arjun Mishra, a New Delhi-based Nepali student wishing not to be named told THT Online over phone.

While Ayer's body has been sent to his family in Kanchanpur for final rites, Pokharel's body would be sent to Kathmandu via New Delhi by air, he added.

Both of the victims in their early 20s were doing the Chartered Accountancy course in the Indian capital.

A team of five Nepali students had reportedly left for the mountainous region for a hiking to celebrate the birthday of one of them.

They had set on the journey from Malana village to the Rasol Top on Wednesday, according to reports published on various Indian media.

Due to the gloomy weather and the heavy snowfall with rain, they lost their way and were stranded in Rasol, the reports added.

It was found that the students spent the night under a tree and had burnt their clothes and sleeping bags to keep themselves warm.

The students had already informed the emergency police that they were stranded in the snow-peaked hills. But one of the guys had died before the rescue teams arrived at the scene.

The team rescued four others and admitted them to the local hospital in Jari where the student in critical condition was pronounced dead.

Three others have been referred to the Regional Hospital Kullu.