Army rescues 447 tourists from Nathu La after snowstorm

The tourists were stuck in 155 vehicles, says defence officials

February 19, 2021 04:20 pm | Updated 04:27 pm IST - GUWAHATI

Rescued tourists being taken to safe accommodation. Photo courtesy Eastern Command, Indian Army

Rescued tourists being taken to safe accommodation. Photo courtesy Eastern Command, Indian Army

The Army rescued 447 tourists caught in sub-zero temperatures following a snowstorm at Nathu La on the India-China border in Sikkim on Thursday, officials said on Friday.

Defence spokesperson Lt. Col. P. Khongsai said the tourists were stuck in 155 vehicles on the Nathu La-Gangtok Road following sudden heavy snowfall.

“The tourists were stranded over a 15 km stretch and their vehicles started skidding after the snowstorm. They were rescued in Army vehicles and given space in the barracks of 17-Mile military camp,” he stated.

“All the tourists were provided accommodation, food and medical support, while 26 had to be hospitalised as they required critical medical support. There were no major injuries or casualties,” he added.

Nathu La, meaning “listening ears”, is in East Sikkim district and is one of the highest motorable roads in the world at 14,450 feet above sea level.

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