KATHMANDU: An Indian woman who lost her leg after she was thrown from a moving train two years ago has become the first female amputee to climb Everest, expedition organisers said Wednesday.

Arunima Sinha, 26, from the northern state of Uttar Pradesh, reached the peak on Tuesday morning after a slow climb from Everest Base Camp.

“She left high camp at 6pm on Monday evening and arrived at the summit at 10:55 am (local time) on Tuesday,” Ang Tshering Sherpa, founder of Asian Trekking, the company that organised the expedition, told AFP.

Sinha's guides were concerned about her slow pace until the team reached an 8,750-metre junction that climbers pass through on their way to the top of the mountain, Sherpa said.

“But once she got to that point, she gained energy and confidence and started moving really quickly,” Sherpa said.

Two years ago, the former national-level volleyball player was shoved from a moving train by thieves when she reportedly attempted to fight them off as they tried to stealing her purse.

A passing train crushed her left leg, forcing doctors to amputate below the knee to save her life.

“At that time everyone was worried for me. I then realised I had to do something in my life so that people stop looking at me with pity,” Sinha told Indian TV before leaving for the climb.

The Tata Steel Adventure Foundation, which sponsored Sinha's climb, contacted Sherpa's Asian Trekking company in 2012 about providing training and guiding for the expedition.

“We knew her story, we knew she recovered well from the amputation because she's a very active athlete,” Sherpa said, adding that the company trained her on Nepal's Island Peak during the 2012 spring climbing season.

Hundreds of climbers have thronged the world's highest peak during a window of good weather. May is considered the best time for climbing in the Nepalese Himalayas because of mild weather and some 300 people have reached the 8,848-metre high Everest so far this year.

The mountain has become a popular symbolic pilgrimage site for record-setting, awareness-raising, and pledge drives for charities, which have increased crowds on the peak.

Tom Whittaker, a British mountaineer, became the first person with a disability to summit the peak in 1998 after a car crash almost two decades earlier had forced him to have his foot amputated.

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Comments (18)

May 22, 2013 3:38 pm

A spirit taller than the tallest mouton, a human worth emulating, I salute thee!

krishna prasad
May 22, 2013 4:05 pm

Congrats..Ms.Arunima Sinha. A real lioness you are. Kudos for your bravery. Way to go..and show this to emulate by others...

May 22, 2013 5:04 pm

Thanks Arunima for being a role model here, you inspire all of us to do the best.

May 22, 2013 6:29 pm

Respect, Respect, Respect! for your courage and energy and a very heartly congratulations for the success. Above all: Thanks a lot for the inspiration for "disabled". Anyway, all of us are disabled in one or the other way and all of us can reach the destination, if they will. Dear Arunima, wish you an easy ride for all the mountains in your life.

May 22, 2013 7:04 pm

You are a huge inspiration Arunima! Keep up the great work!

May 22, 2013 7:10 pm

Inspirational for everyone. Awesome

May 22, 2013 8:45 pm

How many women climbed the Everest this month? Seems like climbing everest is the new big thing!

May 22, 2013 8:56 pm

Good luck Arunima Sinha, you are the great and the example that woman can do as man equal. Bravo !

May 22, 2013 10:54 pm

@Hussain: Heard of Bachendri Pal? Santosh Yadav? Premlata Agarwal? You'll surprised at how many women from India have broken how many records, and since when, when it comes to climbing Everest. A little knowledge never hurt anyone.

Ram Narayanan
May 23, 2013 12:29 am

Bravo!!! You are an inspiration for everyone!

Ram Narayanan
May 23, 2013 12:30 am

@Hussain: When are YOU going to climb?

Proud Indain
May 23, 2013 12:46 am

We salute your courage Arunima. You make us an proud Indian.

May 23, 2013 1:44 am

“At that time everyone was worried for me. I then realised I had to do something in my life so that people stop looking at me with pity,” a thought worth emulating over and over.

May 23, 2013 5:52 am

Now that we are celebrating the record shattering event, we can happily forget the crime that happened to you. We don't have to question the safety of women, after all, a woman who can shatter the record needs no security. Right? This guilty conscience can heave a sigh of relief! How nice if all the raped and wronged women can climb Everest! The rest of the country can sleep peacefully!! May our conscience always covered in beautiful snow because the view of bare rock is horrendous and doesn't look good.

May 23, 2013 10:54 am

Well done Arunima. You can now hold your head HIGH.

Murli Rajan
May 23, 2013 11:56 am

@Hussain: Try not taking the lift today

May 23, 2013 1:51 pm

Bravo! You have given a lot of people a ruse for continuing to live despite all odds.

Lakhkar Khan
May 23, 2013 6:11 pm

Ditto, bravo! You are a great inspiration.

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