Padma Shri recipient and founder of the Indian Spinal Injuries Centre Major HPS Ahluwalia passed away on Friday evening. He was 85.
HPS Ahluwalia was a retired army officer, a trained mountaineer, author and social worker “who has contributed immensely in various fields including adventure, sports, environment, disability and social work”, said a statement.
As a professional mountaineer, he was one of the first Indians to conquer Mount Everest. He has written over 13 books including his autobiography Higher Than Everest, it said Major Ahluwalia has also been a former president of the Indian Mountaineering Foundation and the Delhi Mountaineering Association.
He was honoured with the country’s most prestigious awards – Padma Bhushan, Padma Shri and the Arjuna Award. He also received the Tenzing Norgay National Adventure Award.
He is survived by his wife, Bholi Ahluwalia and daughter Sugandh Ahluwalia.