ibnlive » India

Jun 01, 2011 at 12:38pm IST

Premlata oldest Indian woman to scale Everest

New Delhi: Premlata Agarwal is not just another woman who climbed Mt Everest - she is the mother of two married daughters. At 45, she is also the oldest Indian woman to scale the highest mountain in the world.

What started off as an adventure in 2000 in the form of a hill climbing competition in Jamshedpur, ended at the altitude of more than 29000 feet.

Premlata said, "When I spoke to my daughters and husband for the first time after creating the record, I told them that I have been able to fulfill their expectations."

Premlata has also scaled the peaks of Kilimanjaro and Karakoram. But she wasn't quite sure she could conquer Everest. And when she lost her gloves, just an hour before she reached the top, Premlata thought luck was not on her side.

"My gloves flew away just when I was about to reach and I thought I might have to return back as it wasn't possible to continue without the gloves. Just then I saw a pair of gloves lying there which someone had left by mistake."

Her mentor and trainer couldn't be more proud. Bachendri Pal herself has the distinction of being the first Indian woman to climb Mt Everest way back in 1984. At a time when everyone told Premlata she was trying to achieve the impossible her coach knew there wasn't any mountain high enough that her student couldn't climb.

Pal said, "While she was climbing even other people kept questioning her abilities."

Premlata has today emerged as a hero for women who want to scale new heights, quite literally. And for the coach who passed on her legacy to her protege, it doesn't get any better than this.

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