The Survey of India(SoI) has proposed to re-measure the height of Mount Everest in 2017, as a part of the celebrations of its 250 years completion this year. The announcement was made by the organisation on 10 April 2017, which is also celebrated as the National Survey Day. India was the first country to measure the height of Mount Everest and declare it to be the highest mountain peak in the world in 1855.
The feat was completed under the excellent leadership of George Everest, the then Surveyor General of India. India carried out the exercise again in 1956 to re-confirm the height of the peak. Following the devastating earthquake in Nepal in 2015, several scientists have raised doubts about the peak’s current height. The Survey of India has proposed to re-measure the peak’s height in response to the same.
The organisation has proposed to carry out the feat as an Indo-Nepal joint scientific exercise along with the Survey department of Nepal. A proposal for the same has been forwarded to Nepal. The expedition will begin once a formal consensus is achieved between the two countries. Speaking on the proposal, Swarna Subba Rao, the Surveyor General of India stated that if all the paper works get completed in time then, the expedition would take off by May end or June.
A two pronged strategy would be adopted to complete the task. One team would be sent to the Himalayas with GPS devices to take a satellite data. The second team would undertake the triangulation method, the age-old trigonometric survey, in seven cities within India and Nepal. The outcome of both the methods would be studied and cross checked to determine the actual figure. The SoI survey would once and for all lay to rest all the doubts harboured by the scientists on whether the great peak has shrunk or grown taller following the major shift in tectonic plates.