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Mountaineering

With mortgaged house and huge debts, Piyali climbs Mt Everest & Lhotse in a gap of 2 days

Two days after climbing the world's highest peak Mt. Everest, Piyali Basak from West Bengal summits Mt. Lhotse on Tuesday.

Piyali Basak from Chandannagore in West Bengal climbs Mt Everest and Mt Lhotse in 2 days (Source: Piyali Basak/Facebook)
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Piyali Basak from Chandannagore in West Bengal climbs Mt Everest and Mt Lhotse in 2 days (Source: Piyali Basak/Facebook)

By

The Bridge Desk

Published: 25 May 2022 7:57 AM GMT

Two days after climbing the world's highest peak Mt. Everest, Piyali Basak summits Mt. Lhotse on Tuesday.

Professionally a primary school teacher from Chandannagore in Hooghly district of West Bengal, Piyali had summitted Everest (8,848.86m) almost without oxygen and returned to the base camp-4 safely on Sunday morning. She wanted to climb both the peaks without using supplemental oxygen. However, she had to be given external oxygen support after she crossed 8,450 metres during her Everest expedition.
She started climbing Lhotse (8,516m) on Tuesday morning and reached the peak in the evening. Lhotse is the fourth highest mountain in the world.
Piyali was also the first woman to climb Mt. Dhaulagiri last October without supplemental oxygen; and, within seven months, she has added another shining feather to her cap.


Piyali had faced much hardship, especially financial, in her endeavour. After mortgaging her house and spending her meagre savings, she could only arrange Rs 18 lakh. To climb Everest, one needs at least Rs 35 lakh. When the Nepal government made it clear that they won't allow anyone near the base camp of Everest unless the full amount is paid, Piyali took to Facebook and appealed for crowdfunding for her venture: it helped her to raise Rs 5 lakh. But even then she was short by Rs 12 lakh, which thankfully an agency said it would pay.
It is with this agency's help that Piyali managed to summit the two peaks. However, her family is worried now about how would they repay the Rs 12 lakh debt.
The late Chhanda Gayen, another mountaineer from West Bengal, had climbed both Everest and Lhotse in a span of 22 hours. Chhanda is considered to be the fastest Indian to complete the task. She died in an avalanche in 2014 while climbing Mount Kanchenjungha.






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