Ten soldiers are missing after an avalanche hit an Army base in the Siachen Glacier in Ladakh.
The base is located at a height of 19,000 feet above sea level. The Indian Army and the Air Force have launched rescue operations.
“Ten soldiers, including a junior commissioned officer, are missing after an avalanche hit their patrol in southern side of the Siachin Glacier early on Wednesday,” a senior army official said.
Defence officials said rescue work is on to locate the missing soldiers of the Madras Regiment. Army and IAF rescue operation teams were rushed to the spot immediately. According to reports, rescue operation was launched at the Baan post, the highest on the glacier at about 22,000 feet.
The post was manned by one Junior Commissioned Officer and nine soldiers. The rescue operations are being closely monitored from Leh and Udhampur.
Four soldiers were killed in an avalanche which hit the region on January 4 this year.
Siachen is known as the world’s highest battleground, situated at an altitude of 5,700 metres. The extreme low temperature – which can drop to minus 60 degrees Celsius during winter – has caused thousands of deaths. An estimated 8,000 troops have died on the glacier since 1984, almost all of them from avalanches, landslides, frostbite, altitude sickness or heart failure rather than combat.