Bodies of Siachen soldiers reach Delhi

New Delhi, Feb 15 (IANS) The bodies of nine Indian soldiers, who were buried alive in an avalanche on the hostile Siachen glacier, were brought to the national capital from the frontier Ladakh region on Monday.

Wreaths were laid at the Palam airport in Delhi at a solemn ceremony led by Indian Army vhief General Dalbir Singh. Indian Air Force planes were expected to fly the bodies to be handed over to their families in Pune, Bangalore, Hyderabad, Madurai, Chennai and Thiruvananthapuram.

The soldiers were killed when an avalanche struck their post around 20,000 feet above the sea level on February 3, burying them under nearly 30 feet of snow.

One of them, Lance Naik Hanamanthapa Koppad, was found alive after he remained under the snow for about six days.

The nine bodies were retrieved a week after the tragedy.

Bad weather in the region had hindered flying out their bodies out of Ladakh to their native places so far.

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