HMI Darjeeling sets example during COVID-19 lockdown
Darjeeling/IBNS: Himalayan Mountaineering Institute (HMI), the premier mountaineering training centre in Asia, has set up a fine example in dealing with the situation arisen out of Coronavirus outbreak while the country is fighting a grim battle against the pandemic.
Altogether 75 trainees including 53 in Basic Mountaineering Training Course and 22 including two women in Search & Rescue Course were undergoing field training at an altitude of 14,500 feet Chourikhan in West Sikkim from March 10 and 14 last respectively.
They completed their training on Mar 24 and the countrywide lockdown was declared from the same midnight.
Gp Capt Jai Kishen, the principal of HMI, informed that, "with great efforts the trainees were safely brought back from the Base Camp at Chowrikhang to the Institute campus in Darjeeling under special arrangements with Governments of Skiim and west Bengal.”
Gp Capt. Jai Kishen said that as per schedule, the course would have been over by Mar 29 and the trainees would have left the Institute after attending graduation ceremony the same day itself.
However in view of the countrywide lockdown in vogue, the Institute had to make special arrangements to keep them at the Institute considering their safety and vulnerability of getting infected with Coronavirus and further spreading it if they were asked to leave the Institute on completion of the course, he said.
The principal further informed that the Institute has made adequate arrangement for food, medical and other essential items.
Their medical fitness is being closely monitored by the Institute doctor and nursing staff. HMI has made all necessary and possible arrangements for their boarding, lodging and safety at the Institute at no extra cost.
All the trainees are medically fit and fine.
Gp Capt Jai Kishen mentioned that "in order to keep morale of the students high, make them occupied and at the same time utilize their talents and interests in productive ways."
The Institute during this period of lockdown has designed a special programme and a competition titled “HMI 21 DAYS’ BIG BOSS CHALLENGE” .
The programme include various events like prayer, yoga, Meditation, Cleanliness, Gardening, Group Discussion on various topics, Poem/Essay/Articles Writing, Story Telling.
He said that adequate safety measures are being followed during the conduct of this programme.
Suitable prizes would be awarded to the winners, the Principal said and added that there were events for outsiders also who can join the competition on line.