Everest’s Deadly Challenge: Indian Climber Dies, Season Toll Reaches Eight

Indian Climber Dies After Everest Ascent

Kathmandu: An Indian climber, Banshi Lal (46), who was rescued from Mount Everest last week, tragically passed away at a hospital in Nepal’s capital, Kathmandu. The Nepali tourism department confirmed his death, bringing this season’s fatalities on the world’s highest mountain to eight. Lal’s demise adds to the somber statistics of Everest’s treacherous challenges.

Challenges of Scaling Everest

Mount Everest stands at an imposing height of 8,849 meters above sea level. This year marks the 71st anniversary of Tenzing Norgay and Sir Edmund Hillary’s historic first ascent. Since then, over 6,600 successful attempts have been made, but the mountain remains unforgiving. Climbers face brutal conditions, including freezing winds, thick clouds, and temperatures as low as -1 degree Celsius. Life-threatening snowstorms and avalanches further compound the risks.

The “Death Zone” and Altitude Sickness

All eight fatalities this season occurred in areas above 8,000 meters, commonly known as the “death zone.” In this oxygen-deprived environment, climbers are susceptible to altitude sickness, which can lead to fatal complications. Despite meticulous training and preparation, Everest’s extreme conditions challenge even the most seasoned mountaineers.

Record-Breaking Feats and Permits

Despite the risks, Everest continues to attract adventurers. This year, Nepali climber Phunjo Lamam achieved a remarkable feat, reaching the summit in just 14 hours and 31 minutes—the fastest ascent by a woman. Typically, climbers spend days acclimatizing at base camps before attempting the summit.

Indian Climber Dies After Everest Ascent

Nepal issued over 900 permits for its mountains in 2024, including 419 for Everest, generating more than $5 million in royalties. However, the allure of conquering the world’s highest peak comes with a sobering reality: the mountain claims lives, and each ascent remains a perilous endeavor.