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Maharashtra Tourist, 30, Falls Hundreds Of Feet To Death As Paragliding Harness Fails In Kullu

A tourist from Maharashtra’s Satara fell to his death while paragliding in Himachal Pradesh’s Kullu. The incident happened Saturday, when the deceased, Suraj Sanjay Shah, 30, was taken on a paragliding expedition by a pilot near Dobhi village in Kullu district.

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He was visiting Manali with his friends

Officers at Patalikuhal Police Station in Kullu said a group of four including Shah had come to the area and booked paragliding rides. He was visiting Manali with his friends.  

According to eyewitnesses, the victim fell hundreds of feet possibly due to harness failure during a tandem flight. While the tourist died on the spot, the pilot of the paraglider was safe.

Superintendent of Police, Kullu, Gurdev Sharma said on Sunday that police received information that a person had fallen from a paraglider that was flying at a very high altitude in the Dobhi area.

40th Icare Cup Paragliding Festival, French Alps
AP Photo/Francois Mori

Complaint filed by one of his friends

“As per a complaint filed with us by one of Shah’s friends, a female friend of theirs went on a paragliding ride before Shah and came down to the ground safely. Next, Shah was taken on the ride and soon after taking off, he dropped to the ground from a height of about 300-400 feet,” said police constable Vijay Kumar told Indian Express.  

The police have arrested pilot Vimal Dev and booked him under Section 336 (act endangering life or personal safety of others) and 304A (causing death by negligence) of the Indian Penal Code.

40th Icare Cup Paragliding Festival, French Alps
AP Photo/Francois Mori

Sports activities banned in Himachal since January

Paragliding and all other adventure sports activities in the state were banned by the Himachal Pradesh High court in January this year after taking strict note of the death of a 12-year-old boy from Bengaluru due to an accident near Bir Billing paragliding site.

The court had ordered the setting up of a technical committee to inspect the adventure activity sites. Most of the equipment was found to be not approved by the technical committee and the registration of many operators was faulty. Only those operators were allowed in April who could fulfil the required parameters.

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