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Indian soldier’s remains found 38 years after he disappeared in avalanche

Nearly four decades ago, an Indian soldier was missing following an avalanche that struck the highest ground on earth.

Chander Shekhar was found with an identification disc that bore his army number.

An army patrol found the remains in an abandoned bunker at Siachen Glacier on Monday.

He was seen disappearing on the glacier at its highest point, which is the border heavily militarised between India and Pakistan in divided Kashmir.

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Shekhar, who was a lance naik (equivalent to lance corporal), was one of the first Indian soldiers that occupied the 47-mile glacier after clashes against troops from Pakistan.

He was a part of Operation Meghdoot, and in May 2005 he and 17 others were on patrol at a ridge during an avalanche.

The remains of 13 soldiers were found, but five more, including Shekhar, were still missing.

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According to the army, he had made the “supreme” sacrifice and his remains were given to his family.

After a full military funeral, they were flown back to their home village in Haldwani, northern Uttarakhand.

While India and Pakistan may have had occasional skirmishes at the glacier, more soldiers from both countries have been killed by the harsh conditions than hostile fire.

140 people were killed in an avalanche that struck Pakistan-controlled Kashmir in 2012, which also included 129 soldiers from Pakistan. At least 20 Indian soldiers died in three avalanches five years ago.

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