Kathmandu: The Indian Embassy in Kathmandu has issued a travel advisory urging Indian nationals visiting Kailash-Mansarovar to avoid the route via Nepal.
Since weather conditions are expected to deteriorate in the weeks to come, pilgrims are advised to avoid the Nepalgunj – Simikot – Hilsa route according to an official release of Indian Embassy.
Binaya Kumar ,Deputy Commissioner, Indian Embassy of Nepal said that “this year before the full moon in May 21, around 2000-2500 Indians booked tours to Kailash-Mansarovar by private tour operators via the Nepalgunj – Simikot – Hilsa route”.,
It has been noticed that a number of them are facing logistical problems in Hilsa and Simikot, primarily on account of bad weather which prevents regular evacuation from Hilsa to Simikot by helicopter and Simikot to Nepalgunj by fixed-wing aircraft,Kumar added.
Accounting the problems, Kumar said that not more than 150-200 can stay at Hilsa due to lack of infrastructure there at this time. This year the helicopters couldn’t be used due to the bad weather.
He said that they have arranged supply of essential items along with Nepal authorities and tour operators and also deployed an officer who just visited Simikot and Hilsa and facilitated the situation.
The Embassy in cooperation with Government of Nepal and tour operators is making all possible arrangements for timely evacuation of pilgrims from Hilsa to Simikot and from Simikot to Nepalgunj.
The Nepal Government has well cooperated with the Indian side and moreover they have been in regular contact with the Chief Secretary in Kathmandu, Nepal Army and Ministry of Home Affairs, Kumar said.
Deputy Commissioner Kumar further said that on the ground level, the police authorities and Chief District Officer met the tour operators regularly and ensured the supply of essential items and has also thanked Nepal Government for their cooperation.