Indian Army Everest Expedition 200

Indian Army Everest Expedition 

New Delhi. 24 December 2019. Bombay Sappers have created prominent mark in adventure sports like mountaineering, sailing, para gliding, sky diving and white water rafting. It would be apt to mention here that while Sub Maj SV Birajdar earned Life Time Achievement Award for boxing , Hony Lt Rajendra Prasad Shelke got it for rowing. The recipients of Arjun Award are Maj Afsar Hussain for yachting, Maj MA Naik, Sub Jagjit Singh , Nb Sub Kasam Khan all for rowing.

Then Defence Minister Shri Jaswant Singh meeting Maj Anand Swaroop

 Defence Minister Jaswant Singh meeting Major Anand Swaroop,the Everester-2001

The Bombay Sappers has produced many dedicated mountaineers with Lt Col Hem Lohumi, SM, Col V C Bhatt, Maj Gen L P Sharma, Brig K Babayya who wasawarded Corps Colours , Brigs Amin Naik, V K Bhatt, M P Yadav, Lt Cols Anand Swaroop, and J S Thind, Capt Shipra Majumdar, Nb Sub Didar Singh, Havs Bodh Singh, Abdul Sattar, and Mewa Singh among others. Maj Anand Swaroop, the only Sapper in the Indian Army Everest Expedition 2001, was awarded the Sena Medal for participating in this “conquest”.

Capt Shipra Majumdar the First Lady Officer to summit Mount Everest on 2 June 2005

Capt Shipra Mazumdar , First lady officer ( Sapper ) to summit Everest

In the Army‘s first’ Women Everest Expedition’ Engineers were represented by Capt Shipra Mazumdar and Lt Col Anand Swaroop (Deputy Leader of the Expedition). Approaching Everest from the Tibet side, the team created history on 2 June 2005 when Capt Shipra Majumdar became the first Sapper to summit Mount Everest and the first lady officer of the Indian Army to do so!

Panchchuli Multidimensional Expedition - 1998

Panchulli Multi Dimensional Expedition

In 1998 Panchchuli Multi – dimensional Expedition led by Col Vinod Kumar Bhattwas aimed atscaling the Panchchuli and Bainthi peaks, paragliding and skiing on the forward slopes of the Panchchuli massif, white water rafting in the Kali Ganga River, carrying out scientific and ecological research in the Darma Valley. On 4 May, Panchchuli I was scaled by a Sapper Officer along with two Jawans and Sherpas. The team for Panchchuli II met with an accident and had to be recalled prematurely. The para gliding team (Capt J S Thind and L/Hav Bodh Singh) did flights over the administrative base camp at Dugtu and daredevil jumps from the rocky cliffs near Tedang and from the forward slopes of the Panchchuli massif at a height of 14000 feet. The rafting team covered a distance of 180 kms of River Kali Ganga.

Corps of Engineers Nanda Devi Scientific and EcologicalExpedition 1993

Nanda Devi Scientific & Ecological Expedition 1993

The Corps of Engineers Nanda DeviScientific and Ecological Expedition 1993 was undertaken to arouse environmental awareness, assess the habitat and diversity of flora, study natural resource utilization pattern in the villages within the buffer zone of the Nanda Devi Biosphere Reserve, and also to clean up the mountain basin in the Nanda Devi National Park of the garbage left by previous expeditions. On the mountaineering front the team could boast of only five experienced mountaineers other than the Leader and the Deputy Leader Lt Col Amin Naik. The Nanda Devi basin straddles the Garhwal and Kumaon Himalayas, dominated by the 7817 metre high main peak, ringed by a wall of high ridges with a fearsome gorge basin of the Rishi Ganga. The enclosed space of this natural sanctuary enjoys a distinct sub climate of its own and harbours an ecological treasure trove of many endangered species of flora and fauna.

The First Indian Expedition to the South Pole was undertaken jointly by the Indian Army and the Department of Ocean Development. With a view to carry out a feasibility study for this national venture, a recce team of two Bombay Sappers, Maj Anand Swaroop and Capt R R Bhat went to Antarctica along with the XIX th. Indian Antarctica Scientific Expedition. The recce team successfully carried out a route check and located a land route from Maitri to Polar Plateau across Somoveken Glacier. It is for the first time in the history of Polar exploration that snow vehicles went to latitude 72º 11’ S successfully .

Andamans Sailing Expedition Flag (1)

Sailing to Andaman & Nicobar Islands

The Corps of Engineers has been responsible for pioneering yachting at the national level. In the early days barring a couple of sailors, the Corps team was exclusively made up of Bombay Sappers. A beginning was made in 1967, when Maj S S Uberoi took part in a 750 nm Mumbai-Cochin , Lt Rajendra Dave presenting the Andamans Sailing Expedition Flag to FOC FORTRAN, Andaman Islands , Maj Anil Behl , Capt M S Pillai, expedition on an ‘Albatross’ with primitive navigational aids. Others expeditions to follow were Mumbai to Goa 250 nm ,Mumbai to Andamans 550 nm , Mumbai to Lakshadweep 550 nm,Chennai to Port Blair 800 nm, Mumbai to Bandar Abbas 5000 nm, Mumbai to Singapore 6000 nm,UK to Mumbai 10,000 nmand Trishna around the world 30,000 nm. Other notable sailors from the Bombay Sappers include Maj K K Lamba, Capt P S Bedi, Capt K Babayya, Amitava Sarkar, 2Lt Rajendra Dave, Col Micky Oberoi, Brig T P S Chowdhary AVSM, Maj A Bhattacharya and Maj S N Mathur.

TRISHNA First Indian Sailing Expedition around the world 28 September 1985 - 10 January 1987

Trishna -Indian Army Sailing Expedition around the World

The First Indian Army Expedition sailed around the world in a small 37 feet fibre glass yacht named Trishna from 28 September 1985 – 10 January 1987 .The team comprised of ten Officers of the Corps of Engineers. It covered a distance of approximately 50,000 kms in eighteen months. In this expedition the Bombay Sappers were represented by Col T P S Chowdhury who was the Team Manager , Maj A Bhattacharya , Administration Officer at Pune and Maj S N Mathur ,Administration Officer at Delhi.After completing the World Cruise in 1985-87, it has completed two more long voyages: from Bombay to Singapore and back in 1994-95 and Bombay to Muscat -Salalah-Mahe and back in 1996-97.To herald the new Millennium, the Sappers undertook an expedition to South East Asian countries from 29 November 1999 to 26 March 2000. The Trishna Millennium Sailing Expedition concluded at the Gateway of India after touching the ports of Kochi, Male, Galle, Campbell Bay, Penang, Singapore, Port Kelang, Phuket, Port Blair, Colombo and Goa.


Bombay Sappers in Antartica

Maj Gen S S Sharma led first Wintering expedition to Antarctica. He put in over 20 years of service in the snow bound avalanche areas of J&K including Siachen, HP and Uttaranchal and held the appointment of Director SASE from 1996 to 2004.He was awarded gallantry award Kirti Chakra for Antartica Expedition.

Lt Gen RR Gowami Sky Diving

Lt Gen RR Goswami, PVSM (Retd) is the first Sapper Officer to qualify as a Sky Diver and was selected as the sole male representative of India, to participate in 4th World Cup Skydiving, held in Sep-Oct 1987 at the Olympic Stadium of Seoul (South Korea). His enthusiasm, vast experience and knowledge of free fall parachuting was truly recognized by the Aero Club of India.Maj Ranjan Goswami was the first Sapper to qualify as as sky diver and was the sole male representative of India in the International Precision Sky Diving Championship in Seoul, Korea in 1988. He trained the first batch of Para Commandos in the advance free fall Para trooping. Capt S R Mazagaonkar and Havs Roshan Lal, Khannu Bhai, S M Gaikwad and Mohd Hussain are other Bombay sappers who took keen interest and have given Sky Diving displays all over the country.

Lt Gen RR Goswami the glider pilot

The first ever Hot Air ballooning cum Sky Diving Expedition for the Corps of Engineers was undertaken by 411 Field Company to commemorate its Golden Jubilee in 1991. The expedition covered a distance of 1200 km across New Delhi, Mathura, Agra, Lucknow, Shahjahanpur, Dehra Dun and finally touching down in Delhi. The expedition was led by 2Lt Neeraj Gosain and comprised a team of one JCO and twelve OR. The team also gave free fall demonstrations at various places en route. Nk Satish Kirdat of the Bombay Sappers performed the first ever Skydive Jump from a Hot Air Balloon in the Indian Army. Bombay Sappers have also participated in hang gliding as a sport. Sapper Hang Gliding enthusiasts include Capts Tamal Roy, P K Mangal, R G Divekar and F D Sethna. Lt Col J S Thind and Hav Bodh Singh proved their mettle in Para gliding when they jumped off the difficult slopes of Panchchuli Massif during the Panchchuli Expedition 1998.

Lt Gen SN Sharma creates a record of endurance in gliding

Lt Gen S N Sharma has established an endurance record in gliding. Maj Gen R R Goswami is also an experienced glider pilot. Both of them hold the Silver ‘C’ certificate form Aero Club of India, an affiliate of the Federation Aeronautique International .

A team from 101 Engineer Regiment under the command of Maj Jagveer Singh led a white water raftingexpedition along the Subansiri River.The expedition was flagged off on 20 January 1994 from Talhi. It covered a total distance of 115 kms in 3 days reaching Chaldoghat on 22 January 1994 via Daporijo.109 Rapid Engineer Regiment organized the Shahbaaz Run/ Trek/Rafting Expedition from 22 October to 17 November 2000. The Regiment created a record by conducting the maximum number of adventure activities simultaneously over a period of 12 days which has been mentioned in the Millennium edition of the “Limca Book of Records”.

ADU wishes the new generation to go to more unknown adventure destinations and bring glory to the Bombay Sappers.