Mysuru / Hanagodu : It is a proud moment for Nagarahole Division of the Karnataka Forest Department as one of the staff in the division has scaled the Mount Everest and has spread the message of conservation from the highest peak in the world.
C. Vikram, serving as a Forest Guard at Veeranahosalli Range of Nagarahole Tiger Reserve has scaled the Mount Everest successfully yesterday. On reaching the summit, Vikram first hoisted the Karnataka flag and also unfurled a banner explaining tiger conservation activities in Nagarahole carried out by the Forest Department.
Twenty-five-year-old Vikram hails from Vijayapura in Davanagere district has completed his Master of Arts in Economics through Correspondence Course. Nurturing a wish to scale the Mount Everest, he resigned from Karnataka Road Development Corporation Ltd., (KRDCL) and joined the Forest Department for his daily dose of adventure.
A lover of nature since his younger days, Vikram has participated in many marathons conveying the message of environmental conservation. Last year, he bagged the first place in the Malnad Marathon. He is an avid swimmer too and has bagged the first place in the freestyle category in the State-level competitions organised by the Forest Department. He also secured the top place in the 5,000 metres cross country race.
According to Assistant Conservator of Forest, Veeranahosalli Range Prasanna Kumar and Range Forest Officer M.K. Madhu, the Forest Department has extended all possible help to Vikram so that he could complete the training and achieve the feat.
Apart from sanctioning leave, the Department mobilised finance through various NGOs and Vikram’s colleagues also helped. “Everest expedition needed Rs. 14 lakh and there was no provision in the Forest Department rules to sanction the fund. But we managed to mobilise funds through various sources,” Prasanna Kumar said.
Vikram’s colleagues said that he had been an adventure enthusiast and had nurtured the dream of climbing the tallest peak since his student days. He is the second official from the Forest Department to scale the Everest after Deputy Conservator of Forests S. Prabhakaran, who had successfully climbed the Everest in 2016.