Insurance coverage for guides hikedThe government on Friday raised the life and medical insurance coverage amounts for high-altitude mountain guides and workers, effective from September 1, 2014.
As per the government’s revised policy, life insurance coverage amount for Sardar (team leader), high-altitude guides and workers (who go above the base camps) has been hiked to Rs 1.5 million from Rs 1 million. And, the medical insurance coverage amount has been raised to Rs 400,000 per person from Rs 300,000.
However, the personal accident insurance and workers compensation insurance for the officials involved in emergency search and rescue operation has been kept unchanged at $10,000. Also, insurance coverage for workers of base camps and local porters was also kept unchanged at Rs 800,000 and Rs 500,000, respectively. The government had agreed to revise the insurance coverage of high-altitude workers and guides after the April 18 avalanche that killed 16 Nepali guides. However, the government is yet to provide Rs 500,000 for the families of the deceased. The Tourism Ministry had said it would compensate the victims’ family with increased insurance amount.
As per the regulation, a mountaineering expedition team will insure, from insurance companies as recognised by the government, of the mountain guide, high-altitude workers and base camp workers of their personal accident.
Meanwhile, travel trade entrepreneurs have asked the government to allow the private sector to promote and brand the Great Himalaya Trail (GHT).
“The government should incorporate Trekking Agencies Association of Nepal (TAAN) and Nepal Mountaineering Association (NMA) as partners for promoting and branding the trail,” said TAAN President Ramesh Prasad Dhamala, during the 24th annual general meeting of NMA here on Friday.
The budget for this fiscal year has allocated Rs 50 million to promote the GHT. GHT is the longest and highest alpine walking track in the world. The GHT spans the length of Nepal from Darchula and Humla in the west to Kanchenjunga in the east. Few hardy souls would tackle the full length of the trail in Nepal at one go, taking some 150 days. The concept of the GHT emerged in the late 1990s in Nepal.