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Darjeeling college girls selected to scale Mount Everest

Trishala Gurung and Sulaxchana Tamang selected to scale everest
Two college girls from Darjeeling have been selected for a 10-member expedition team to scale Mount Everest organised by the NCC in May 2016.
Trishala Gurung, 22, a second-year student of Southfield College, and Sulaxchana Tamang, 21, a first-year student of Ghoom Degree College in Darjeeling, did not have NCC wings in their college.
They have undergone training at the Himalayan Mountaineering Institute and have climbed Mount Deo Tibba (19,688 feet) in Himachal Pradesh and Mount Trishul (23,353ft) in Uttarakhand before being selected for the expedition
"After our performances during the selection, we were asked to join the NCC at Darjeeling Government College through a process of open enrolment," said Sulaxchana.
The duo came to know about their selection trial through a notice on their college board.
"During the selection, 100 girls were told to do a basic mountaineering course at the HMI in Darjeeling early this year and 40 students were selected for the Mount Deo Tibba expedition in May this year. After this expedition, 15 girls were selected to climb Mount Trishul in September and finally 10 girls were selected for the expedition to scale Mount Everest in May 2016,"said Trishala.
On November 24, Trishala's father Ganesh Kumar Gurung, who is a businessman, received an email from the office of the director-general, NCC, confirming the selection of Trishala and Sulaxchana along with eight other girls. In January next year, the duo would leave for Siachen for a three-week training at the Army Mountaineering Institute.
The two are leaving no stone unturned to maintain their physical fitness.
"I jog along the Mall Road and have joined a gym here. I exercise for around two-three hours in the morning and after lunch, I carry a load of 10kg and walk uphill between 6 and 10km every day and also meditate in between," said Trishala, who was inspired to climb the hills after seeing her dad's photograph in snowy mountains which were taken during his course at the HMI.
"The two girls could not sit for their examinations because of the selection expeditions. Even this year, they might not be able to sit for the university examinations as these are scheduled around the Everest expedition time. This would lead to two years of loss in their studies," said Ganesh.
"I have approached the North Bengal University and requested them to work out a system so that Trishala does not lose another year. The university authorities have agreed to discuss the issue at the executive committee meeting", said the principal of Southfield College.
"This is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity but I am also concerned about my studies," said Trishala. The parents are happy but also worried for their daughter.
The two girls are excited. "Our experiences suggest that the 10 members of the team have to remain united at all times. One small carelessness in those mountains could mean the end of the expedition," said Sulaxchana.(TT)

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