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About Anindya

Anindya Raja Mukherjee

Anindya Mukherjee is a mountaineer, explorer, adventurer, author and a TedX speaker based in West Bengal, India. He lives, every moment, ever hopeful for that calling (described in the lines of Tagore above) with a mantra of approaching nature and the great outdoors with humility, knowledge and courage. He makes a living by helping others climb mountains but he would rather be wandering aimless somewhere in Africa where strangers become friends before you know it. He considers himself a student of human history, culture and philosophy. Anindya enjoys bike-packing, bouldering and the pure bliss of camping in his leisure time.

Anindya works as an independent mountaineering expedition outfitter and trek leader in the Indian Himalaya. Over the past 20 years, he has actively participated in, led and organized more than 60 mountaineering expeditions across the Indian Himalaya. Apart from climbing and leading climbers from across the globe to Himalayan summits, he has trekked extensively across Indian Himalaya and continues to do so.

To enrich his very own understanding of this world and to add diversity to his experience and expertise, Anindya has climbed and trekked in Kenya, Tanzania, Uganda, China, Greenland, Iceland, Caucasus, Kyrgyzstan, Sierra Cascades (USA), North Ireland, and in the Swiss and French Alps.

Mt Elbrus Speed Climbing

In 2008, Anindya became the first South Asian to participate (and succeed) in high altitude speed climbing competition on Mount Elbrus, Russia. He is a strong proponent of lightweight, unsupported, alpine style climbing in the Himalaya and he practices what he preaches.

In 2015, he explored, climbed and christened a small mountain range (Jidege Shan) in Yunnan, China, for the first time as well. This shows the spirit of an explorer cannot be subdued by unwelcoming, alien terrain and financial constraints. All the reports of these exploits have been accepted and published by The American Alpine Journal, The Himalayan Journal and The Alpine journal.

But above all, his passion lies in exploring the unknown valleys, glaciers and mountains of the Indian Himalaya and exploring the hidden glaciers of the great East Ridge of Kangchenjunga has been his favorite project over the past decade.

Glimpses from Anindya's explorations

Nanda Devi Sanctuary

As a result of his passion for exploration and climbing, in 2011, Anindya charted a new route on the outer wall of the famed Nanda Devi Sanctuary that can serve as an alternative to the classic Rishi gorge route. In the same year, he did the first ever documented ascent of Zemu Gap from south in Sikkim.

Zemu Gap

In 2014 & 2016, Anindya explored two more Himalayan glaciers, namely South Simvu & Zumthul Phuk, for the first time. Keeping his style of lightweight exploratory work with constant movement, he successfully documented another first ascent in 2021- Kang Yatse IV in Markha valley, Ladakh Himalaya.

Nanda Devi Expedition

After a lightweight and semi-alpine style attempt on Nanda Devi East (7434m) in 2013, Anindya returned for a rematch the following year along with his friend George Rodway and successfully climbed the peak on 3rd July, 2014. This was the 12th ascent of the peak out of 28 attempts in last 75 years.

A few notable expeditions by Anindya:

  • Kamet (7756m-2005)
  • Shivling (6543m-2008)
  • Manirang (6595m-2006 and 2009)
  • Peak Kellas (6680m-2009)
  • Peak Satopanth (7075m-2011, 2016)
  • Nandaghunti (6309m-2005)
  • Nanda Devi East (7434m-2013, 2014-summit in 2014)
  • Trisul-I (7120m-2013)
  • Janhukot (2010)
  • Zemu Gap (5861m -2011, first ascent from south)
  • Italian Zemu Exploratory Expedition (2014)
  • Black Peak (6387m-2003, 2008, 2012)
  • Kang Yatse IV (2021-first ascent)
  • Awards 7 Recognition

    Awards & Recognitions

    On 30th March 2013, Anindya became the first recipient of the prestigious Jagdish Nanavati Award for Excellence in Mountaineering.

    On 26th August 2017, he was felicitated by The Telegraph Education Foundation.

    On 22nd November 2020, he was bestowed an honorary membership of the Netaji Research Bureau, Kolkata largely due to his field research work while retracing the trail of the Azad Hind Fauj from Singapore to Manipur in 2019.

    Publications

    Some of Anindya’s reports on his first ascents and new explorations have been published by the prestigious The American Alpine Journal, The Alpine Journal, The Alpinist Magazine and The Himalayan Journal. He is currently a Managing Committee member of the Himalayan Club.

    Books & Other Writings

    So far, Anindya has three books published in his mother language Bengali and one in English:

    • ‘Awetoeb Africa’ (Bengali)
    • ‘Abar Chander Pahar’ (Bengali)
    • ‘Desh Nayaker Pothe’ (Bengali)
    • ‘The Sahara Soliloquies’ (English)

    A portion from his blog ‘Across the Sahara on a Bicycle’ is part of the Collins Learning’s English Textbook series (English Alive) taught in the CBSE curriculum since 2018. Anindya regularly writes in newspapers and magazines based in Kolkata.

    Get the Kindle Edition of his book The Sahara Soliloquies