Unseen Passage: Mt. Everest

Mt. Everest has continued to attract ever since June 8, 1924, when two members of a British expedition George Mallory and Andrew Irvine, had first attempted to climb the summit. The two men were last spotted “going strong” for the top, until the clouds perpetually swirling around Everest, engulfed them. They then vanished.

Mallory’s body was not found for another 75 years, in May 1999. Ten more expeditions were to follow before the historic climb of Everest for the first time, by Edmund Hillary, a New Zealand beekeeper, and Tenzing Norgay, an acclaimed Sherpa climber. The news of the climb reached England at the time of the coronation of Queen Elizabeth and Hillary became famous overnight, in all of the British Empire. Tenzing on the other hand, became a symbol of national pride across both Nepal and India.

Today, Mt Everest is drawing attention for all the negative reasons. The entire route that the climbers follow to reach the top is littered with rubbish and in sore need of cleaning up. The rubbish strewn all over the mountain includes oxygen cylinders, human waste, and even climbers’ bodies which do not decompose in the extreme cold.

Under the new regulations passed by the Nepalese government, climbers scaling Everest will have to bring back eight kilograms of garbage. This amounts exclusive of the climbers’ own garbage weight. This measure is taken to restore the pristine nature of the peak.

The rule will be applicable to those climbers of Mt Everest who will ascend beyond Everest’s base camp, from April onwards. Climbers who fail to comply with this new rule are likely to be charged and legal action would be taken against them. The action would involve the paying of a fine, or other penalty.

Expeditions returning to the base will have to submit their trash at an office to be set up in the precincts of the Everest Base Camp.

Q. On the basis of your reading of the passage given above, answer the following questions:

  1. The first attempt to scale Mt Everest was made by:
    1. one Britisher
    2. George Mallory and Andrew Irvine
    3. Andrew Irvine
    4. both 1. and 2.
  2. The rubbish strewn all over the mountain includes which do not decompose in the extreme cold.
    1. oxygen cylinders
    2. human waste
    3. climbers’ bodies
    4. all of these
  3. The news of the climb reached England:
    1. Mt Everest is drawing attention for all the negative reasons
    2. the coronation of Queen Elizabeth
    3. new regulations were passed by the Nepalese government
    4. both 1. and 2.
  4. Climbers who fail to comply with this new rule are likely
    1. to be put in prison
    2. pay a fine
    3. to be charged and legal action would be taken against them
    4. both 1. and 2.
  5. George Mallory and Andrew Irvine became the victims of:
    1. intense heat of sunlight
    2. storm
    3. heavy rain
    4. swirling clouds around Everest
  6. Every climber of the Mt Everest has to bring a certain amount of garbage. It:
    1. proves that he/she reached the mountain peak
    2. maintains cleanliness of the mountain peak
    3. proves that he/she indeed has strength
    4. is done to create a new mountain
  7. Mallory’s body was not found for another _____years, in May 1999.
  8. Under the new regulations passed by the Nepalese government, climbers scaling Everest will have to bring back ten kilograms of garbage. (True/False)

Answer

  1. George Mallory and Andrew Irvine
  2. all of these
  3. the coronation of Queen Elizabeth
  4. to be charged and legal action would be taken against them
  5. swirling clouds around Everest
  6. maintains cleanliness of the Mountain peak
  7. 75
  8. False

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