A 16-member mountaineering team from north east India has scaled world’s highest peak Mt Everest, becoming the first from the region to achieve the feat.

“We are happy to have the first team from the north-eastern states to achieve this task and we are looking forward to support from the Central government to conduct more such expeditions,” Chief Secretary of Manipur, D S Poonia said at a felicitation ceremony in New Delhi.

U K Sangma, Secretary to the Department of North Eastern Region (DoNER), said in order to promote such expeditions, the Centre is considering the proposal to set up a regional civilian mountaineering institute in Imphal.

“Though Nagaland and Tripura have not approached us with any proposal (in this regard), we will continue to provide the support to all the north eastern states,” he added.

The expedition by the 16-member team from the Manipur Mountaineering Trekking Association (MMTA) was funded by the Government of Manipur, the North Eastern Council (NEC) and was supported by the DoNER.

President Pranab Mukherjee had flagged off the expedition from the national capital in March.

While Anand Gurung (Sikkim) was the first climber from the team to reach the summit, another team member Anshu Jamsenpa, a mother of two from Arunachal Pradesh, became the first woman from north east India to successfully scale Everest thrice through their latest exploits, Mr. Poonia said.

Narrating her experience, Ms. Anshu said, “it was tough for me to leave my daughters behind and prepare for the training. But I managed to do so out of my will force and support from everyone including my husband.”

Apart from her, N Bidyapathi Devi, a constable in the Manipur Police, became the first woman from the state to reach the summit. She was promoted as sub-inspector by the Manipur government as a reward for her achievement.