Helicopter services for snow cut off Lahaul valley in Himachal started

Tandi (Lahaul-Spiti Himachal Pradesh): Heavy snow having cut off Lahaul & Spiti valley across Rohtang Pass, helicopter services for meeting emergency and movement needs of the high altitude tribal’s was started today.

Helicopter service started for Lahaul

The first helicopter sorties from Bhuntar to Tandi village in Lahaul today ferried about 20 people, district administration sources revealed.

With over 5 feet of snow across the 3978 meter high Rohtang Pass, the traffic would only open by may- June next year, leaving Lahaul valley and much of Spiti landlocked for the next five to six months.

To provide connectivity to the area that borders the Indo-China border on the Tibetan side, the state government presses into services hired helicopter services to meet the emergency needs of the about 25 thousand resident of Lahaul valley.

Police assist a patient into the helicopter

Lahaul and Spiti happens to be one of the largest districts in terms of administered area but is also one inhabited with least human population densities.

Much of the land is covered by high rise mountain peaks and glaciers.

To provide round the year access to the regions a 8.8 Km long tunnel below Rohtang Tunnel is being constructed by defense engineers.

Progress on the tunnel construction has been hindered because of water ingress into the working area of the tunnels.

Photos by Sanjay Dutta

Sanjay Dutta, an engineer by qualification but is a journalist by choice. He has worked for the premier new agency Press Trust of India and leading English daily Indian Express. With more than a decade of experience, he has been highlighting issues related to environment, tourism and other aspects affecting mountain ecology. Sanjay Dutta lives in a village close to Manali in Kullu valley of Himachal.

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