New Delhi: The first ever all-girl National Cadet Corps (NCC) Mount Everest expedition was today flagged off from here. Led by Col Gaurav Karki, fifteen service personnel and ten girl cadets aim to reach Nepal on March 31 and after a long trek to the base camp from April 8 to 25, the team is likely to try to scale the peak between May 15 and 25.
Director General NCC Lt Gen A Chakravarty had proposed the conduct of first ever NCC Girls Expedition to Mt Everest in 2014. Pan-India trials at 25 selected hubs were carried out and 100 girl cadets nominated to undergo the customised mountaineering course at Himalayan Mountaineering Institute (HMI), Darjeeling, from January 7 to February 3 last year.
Based on their performance, 40 girl cadets were selected for the first pre-Everest Expedition to Mt Deo-Tibba (19688 Feet), near Manali in Himachal Pradesh in April-May, 2015, a statement by the Defence Ministry said.
Following which, 15 cadets were selected for the next phase based on their performance. In August last year, the team set off on the second pre-Everest expedition to Mt Trishul (23,360 Feet), and 10 girl cadets were finally selected for the Everest Expedition. The culmination of pre-expedition activities was winter training at Siachen Base Camp from January 11 to January 31 this year.
Every year, NCC sponsors 354 boy and girl cadets for basic mountaineering courses at HMI, Darjeeling, NIM Uttarkashi, ABVIMAS Manali and Jawahar Institute of Mountaineering and Winter Sports (JIM & WS), Pahalgam.
Mountaineering Expedition as an adventure activity was introduced in NCC in the year 1970. Since then, NCC conducts two mountaineering expeditions every year, one each for boy and girl cadets, thus having launched more than 70 expeditions to various peaks.