Pakistani expedition aims to summit Mount Everest

Few Pakistanis have stepped on top of the world-summit of Mount Everest. Now a Pakistani expedition, consisting of Lieutenant Colonel Abdul Jabbar Bhatti and Saad Mohamed, is going to give a shot at this huge feat.

While talking to The Nation Abdul Jabbar shared his life story and discussed the preparations for this upcoming adventure. Medical administrative by profession, Abdul Jabbar said that since his student days he had this passion of adventure sports especially climbing.

“Before joining the Army I did an elementary course of climbing from Alpine Club in which I got the top position. I was then sent to France for an advanced course,” he recalled.

“From French mountaineering school ENSA I did that advanced course during which I joined Pakistan Army,” he said.

About fulfilling his passion in the Army, the Lieutenant Colonel said that Pakistan Army gave him full chance to fulfill his passion. “With a team we managed to summit Gashberum-II which is among the 8,000-meter mountains,” he said.

“During that period I got Pride of Performance Award from Pakistan government due to my achievements in climbing,” Lt Col Bhatti told me.

“After that I went to Saudi Arabia because of which I got financial resources. From there I went to France in 1988 and at the time paragliding had freshly started. I was the first Pakistani to do that course and I also introduced it in Pakistan especially in Army,” he said.

“During my Army career I did numerous expeditions. I became the head of mountaineering team of the Army, along with which I also led many international expeditions.

“I led these teams to expeditions of G-I, G-II, Broad Peak and also a Pakistan-China team for Spantik summit in 2012.”

While sharing the preparation details of recent expedition to Mount Everest, Abdul Jabbar told The Nation that he had this idea in mind for years and wanted to achieve this milestone, but due to a number of reasons it could not transpire and continued getting delayed.

“But last year the idea just got stuck in my mind and I decided to go for it. Hence, I started the preparation. Because it needs time to get prepared for such adventure.”

About his team, the Lt Colonel told me that he and another mountaineer from Lahore named Saad Mohamed will go on this expedition together.

“Although both of us did our preparation separately, but then we decided to go for it together,” he shared.

While discussing about procedure and expenditure for Mount Everest expedition, he said the Nepal government is quite lenient in giving permission as it has set specific lines for climbers.

“One of the conditions is that you have to plan your expedition with a local Nepalese tourist company and around $30,000 in total is the expenditure for this summit.

“We both will climb together and according to weather, physical condition any of us, or both of us, will push for the summit in mid-May.

“It is not necessary that the whole team summits the mountain, if even one member of the team reaches the top then it is considered to be a successful expedition.

“It is team work, including sherpas with high altitude porters, as the whole team works to reach the summit. And then one or two members are sent to climb on top of that mountain, so either it will be me or Saad. But whoever does this, it will be successful,” he explained.

He added that the team will push for final summit during mid-May because that's when there is a window for the last push, adding that the team will try to do it through South Col of Mount Everest.

“We are hopeful that we will be successful in placing our feet on top of Mount Everest,” he concluded.

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