Even Mount Everest has not been spared from the COVID-19 pandemic. The coronavirus has spread to the remote Himalayas with multiple climbers testing positive at the base camps of Mount Everest and surrounding peaks.
As per a BBC report, 17 cases have been sent from the base camp and higher camps to be treated at hospitals in Kathmandu.
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While the Nepal government has so far denied any outbreak of COVID-19 at Mt Everest and other peaks, according to Pawel Michalski, a climber from Poland, over 30 people have contracted the virus.
He wrote on Facebook that more than 30 people who had difficulty breathing had been airlifted by helicopter to Kathmandu — and "later found to be positive for coronavirus".
More than a thousand people are typically camped at the foot of Everest, including foreign climbers and the teams of Nepali guides that escort them to the peak.
Nepal's tourism industry suffered a devastating blow last year when the pandemic prompted a complete shutdown of its summits, costing millions in lost revenue.
This year, authorities eased quarantine rules in an effort to lure foreign adventurers and have issued climbing permits to more than 400 people, a new record.
The outbreak at peaks has coincided with the second wave of COVID-19 infections, with active cases in the country rising six-fold in the last two weeks.
Nepal has reported 8,970, cases of the coronavirus in the last 24 hours, taking the total tally of infections to 3,68,580, the health ministry said on May 6. The health ministry said that the nation also reported the deaths of 54 new patients suffering from COVID-19.
Local authorities have re-imposed lockdown in most parts of the country including Kathmandu valley by one more week till May 12.
(With inputs from agencies)Click here for Moneycontrol's full coverage of the COVID-19 outbreak