Srinagar, Sept 17: At least 22 soldiers have died while serving at high altitudes including Siachen Glacier, the world’s highest battle ground, the government informed on Thursday.
In 2016, there were six casualties while the number stood at eight each in 2018 and 2019 respectively.
“Causes of death in Siachen Glacier and other Super High Altitude Areas range from those directly related to High Altitude like High Altitude Pulmonary Oedama (HAPO) and Pulmonary Thrombo Embolism (PTE) to other general causes,” Shripad Naik, minister of state for Defence, told parliament in a written reply.
“Indian Army is deployed in highly treacherous terrain along the borders in J&K, where there is constant threat of crevasses, avalanches and other weather related calamities to the troops,” he said as per the reply, a copy of which lies with GNS. “The government undertakes several steps to prevent casualties like pre-induction medical examination, requisite medical cover at all medical echelons which are well equipped to deal with any high altitude illness, stringent acclimatization schedule, provision of specialized training, special living shelters including provision of kerosene oil, provision of specialized clothing and high quality rations,” he said, adding, “ Steps are also undertaken to utilize modern technological equipments for rescue missions, prevention of accidents and ensuring rapid and timely
evacuation of casualty, apart from issuing of regular advisories.