After Everest, record-breaking twins looking to conquer Mt Elbrus

Twin sisters- Tashi and Nungshi Malik- beamed with joy after they were honoured by Haryana Governor Jagannath Pahadia at Haryana Raj Bhawan in Chandigarh on Friday.

The sisters, who climbed Mt Everest on May 19 earlier this year and became the first twins to scale the world's highest peak, showed the same camaraderie which they displayed during the expedition. Now, they are ready for another challenge- a three-week mountain climbing event called Climbathon in Himachal Pradesh, starting from July 20.

"It's a new challenge for us. After scaling Mt Everest , we wanted to get some rest. Now, we are ready for some more climbing experience. It's a great honour to meet Haryana Governor Jagannath Pahadia and his words motivated us a lot. We will now be heading to Manali, which is the base for the Climbathon and would undertake the programme for three weeks," shares Tashi Malik, the youngest of the twins.

Daughters of Retd Col Virender Singh Malik, who moved from Anwali in Sonepat district to settle in Dehradun, the twins had their first sight of a mountain when their father was posted in Manipur. As an Army colonel in 2/8 Garwhal Rifles, who was always interested in building positive community developments in the North East states, Malik wanted his daughters to give mountaineering a go.

The twins, who had to change over ten schools due to their father's postings, finally gave mountaineering a shot when they enrolled for a basic course from NIM, Uttarkashi in 2009. It took them two years to convince their mother Anju Thapa Malik about their plans to climb Mt Everest and when Anju Malik agreed, the twins wasted no time in taking advanced and skiing courses from NIM and Gulmarg respectively.

"We used to do small treks around Mussorie and also in Manipur. Mom would always accompany us but when we told her about our plans to climb Mt Everest, she was a little apprehensive. It was during a visit to NIM, when our instructors shouted, 'Our future everesteers have come,' only then mom was convinced," says Tashi.

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