KATHMANDU : TIt has been 14 years today since the catastrophic chopper crash that took place at Ghunsa in the Faktanglung rural municipality of Taplejung district.
September 23 has been marked as the National Conservation Day in commemoration of the contributions of the conservationists who lost their lives in the crash.
A total 24 conservationists, including the then Minister of State for Forest Gopal Rai had lost their lives in the tragic accident that occurred on September 23, 2006.
The helicopter carrying the minister and conservationists met with an accident when it struck the Ghunsa-based Fale Mountain on the way back to Kathmandu after handing over the Kanchanjunga Conservation Area Project to the community, a programme that had been organized by the World Wildlife Fund Nepal.
Minister Rai, his spouse Meena Rai, geography and planning expert Dr Harka Gurung, conservationist Dr Tirthaman Maskey, secretary of the ministry of forest and soil conservation Dr Damodar Prasad Parajuli and director general of the Department of National Park and Wildlife Narayan Poudel had lost their lives in the tragic crash.
A study taskforce coordinated by Janakeshari Raj Pandit formed immediately after the crash had concluded that the accident took place due to unfavourable weather conditions.