Indian Army’s Yeti ‘footprint’ pictures cause online storm

Men measure large foot prints in the snow, sighted by the Indian Army in the northeastern Himalayas. (AFP)
Updated 30 April 2019

Indian Army’s Yeti ‘footprint’ pictures cause online storm

  • Several Twitter observers asked why there was only one footprint when the beast would probably have had two feet

NEW DELHI: Pictures of a “Yeti footprint” the Indian Army posted on social media triggered a barrage of jokes Tuesday.

“For the first time, an #IndianArmy Moutaineering Expedition Team has sited Mysterious Footprints of mythical beast ‘Yeti’,” an apparently serious — though misspelled — tweet on the army’s official account said Monday, alongside three images of prints in the snow.

It added the “elusive snowman has only been sighted at Makalu-Barun National Park in the past,” referring to footprints reported by British explorer Eric Shipton in 1951 on the west side of Mount Everest.

According to folklore, the abominable snowman lives in the Himalayas but no proof of the enormous creature has ever been produced.

Social media users were quick to jump on the Indian military for its tweet. “With all due respect, institutions such as yours should be more responsible and careful before going ahead and declaring the sighting of any footprints as ‘Yeti’s’!”, said Kushal Prajapati.

“There’s been lots of research done on Bigfoot/Yeti (including sighting/footprints) with none proving its existence,” he added.

“Seriously disappointing to see Army propagating such foolish myths into reality. Expected better from you guys,” said another comment.

Several Twitter observers asked why there was only one footprint when the beast would probably have had two feet.

Others, were more forgiving, though still tongue-in-cheek.

“Congratulations, we are always proud of you. salutes to the #IndianArmy Mountaineering Expedition Team,” wrote Tarun Vijay, a leader of the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party. But Vijay said the snowman should not be referred to as “a beast.”

The army said the footprints measured 32 inches by 15 inches and were spotted by a team on April 9 close to the Makalu Base Camp, an isolated area on the Nepal-China frontier.

An army official said that pictures were released to “excite a bit of a scientific temper.” “We will share whatever we get with the domain experts to analyze. We will be contacting the team on the satphone in the evening for more details about it,” the official said.

The yeti is traditionally described as an ape-like creature, taller than a human, that lives in the Himalayas, Siberia, and parts of Central and East Asia.

Forensic results of previous samples have proved to be from prehistoric bears.


Five dead, three missing after Jakarta floods

Updated 26 February 2020

Five dead, three missing after Jakarta floods

  • The muddy deluge inundated the presidential palace, a major hospital and entire neighborhoods across Jakarta on Tuesday
  • Floodwaters reached more than a meter (three feet) in some parts of the capital but were receding by Wednesday

JAKARTA: Five people were killed, three more are missing and thousands are unable to return to their waterlogged homes after floods submerged parts of Indonesia’s capital, officials said Wednesday.

The muddy deluge inundated the presidential palace, a major hospital and entire neighborhoods across Jakarta on Tuesday, only weeks after 70 residents of the low-lying megacity died in some of the deadliest flooding in memory.

Two teenagers were among the five people drowned or electrocuted in hard-hit parts of the city, Indonesia’s national disaster agency said.

“The joint rescue team is still searching” for three other possible victims, agency spokesman Agus Wibowo told AFP, adding that nearly 20,000 people were staying in emergency shelters.

Floodwaters reached more than a meter (three feet) in some parts of the capital but were receding by Wednesday, a day after rescuers combed drenched districts in pontoon boats to locate vulnerable residents.

Parts of the city had ground to a halt as thousands of buildings were swamped, sparking power outages and disrupting commuter trains.

Jakarta, a sprawling city beleaguered by massive traffic jams and poor infrastructure, is prone to flooding during the annual wet season.

Indonesian president Joko Widodo last year unveiled plans to relocate the capital to an as yet unbuilt city on Borneo island.