The Nagaland State Disaster Management Agency (NSDMA) and the Assam Rifles found the four missing trekkers in Dzükou Valley in the intervening night of March 18-19.
Three teams, including the Assam Rifles had spread across the Dzükou hills to find the missing trekkers from Mumbai.
The Assam Rifles team was able to locate them at around 3:15 am.
Four trekkers namely Shankar, Prabhu, Kaushalaya and Sumitra from Mumbai had gone missing in Dzükou after venturing into the hills without a local guide on Sunday.
The trekkers were ‘suffering from extreme cold but were safe and sound’, the rescue had stated.
Rains and thunder storm added to their despair.
The rescue team reached the Jakhama highway entry point to Dzükou at around 8 am on March 19.
“They were not clear from which direction they entered but they said they entered from Viswema. Our boys were on Viswema route while the Assam Rifles went from the Jakhama route, which is where they were able to locate them,” an official of the NSDMA.
“They may have felt that our terrain is similar to South India or Western Ghats, and diverted from the footpaths, figuring only much later that they were lost,” added the NSDMA official.
“To find cell phone networks to call for help once they realized they were lost, the trekkers climbed higher still. They were 270 meters away from the Dzükou viewpoint tower,” the NSDMA official further added.
The NSDMA has now issued an advisory to all trekkers, particularly from outside Nagaland, to take the support of local guides while trekking any part of the Naga hills.
In a separate press release, the PRO, HQ IGAR (North) informed that the Kohima Battalion Assam Rifles under the aegis of HQ IGAR (North) successfully rescued the four tourists who were stranded during a trek to Dzükou Valley on March 19.
According to the press note, the tourists were able to contact Assam Rifles which immediately launched a specialist team from Kohima Battalion along with troops of 164 TA Bn (Home & Hearth).
After a thorough search of six hours, the troops were able to establish contact with the stranded tourists. The tourists were given immediate relief and successfully brought to Kohima, the press release added.