Love Raj Singh Dharmshaktu, who holds the Indian record for successfully climbing Everest the most number of times, has added yet another ascent of the peak to his tally.
At 6.50 AM on May 20, 2018, he reached the summit of Everest for the seventh time.
He was leading an expedition by the Border Security Force (BSF).
Love Raj is currently an Assistant Commandant with BSF.
The 2018 climbing season also saw Kami Rita Sherpa of Nepal set a new overall record for the most number of successful ascents of Everest.
In May 2018, he reached the summit of Everest for the 22nd time.
A mountaineer who has climbed several peaks in the Indian Himalaya besides multiple ascents of Everest, Love Raj was awarded the Padma Sri in 2014.
The 2018 expedition was Love Raj’s tenth visit to Everest.
He had successful ascents of the peak previously in 1998, 2006, 2009, 2012, 2013 and 2017.
Last year, he had reached the summit of Everest on May 27. The 2017 summit followed an aborted expedition in 2015, when Nepal was rocked by earthquake and an avalanche slammed into Everest Base Camp, claiming significant number of casualties.
This blog has previously written on Love Raj and the Johar region of Kumaon that he hails from. For more on Love Raj, please try this link: https://shyamgopan.com/2014/07/10/everest-to-the-east/ For an account of the 2015 avalanche including Love Raj’s experience, please try this link: https://shyamgopan.wordpress.com/2015/06/17/everest-when-the-earthquake-struck/
(The author, Shyam G Menon, is a freelance journalist based in Mumbai.)