KATHMANDU, May 29 (Xinhua) -- The 11th Sagarmatha Day was marked on Tuesday in Nepal, where Sagarmatha means Mount Qomolangma in the language.
The Himalayan nation has been marking the day every year on May 29 commemorating the first ascent of the world's highest peak by Sir Edmund Hillary and Tenzing Norgay Sherpa in 1953.
The celebration came at a time when the spring climbing season just ended with hundreds of ascents to the 8,848-meter high peak from southern face, with a collection of millions as revenue from the permits.
Addressing a function organized by the government, a Nepali minister said that Nepal places a high priority to the word's highest peak but needs many more to be done for its preservation, especially for the high-altitude Sherpa guides.
"Sherpas are the backbones of Everest (Mt. Qomolangma), who give lives to any expeditions. So, it's our responsibility to retain them for sustainable tourism of Nepal," Bina Magar, a government minister, who herself is a climber, said.
On the occasion, the government honored Nepali climbers for their ascents to the roof of the world with successful world records.
48-year-old Kami Rita Sherpa was honored for being the only man on earth with 22 summits to Mt. Qomolangma, while 44-year-old Lakpa Sherpa was honored for being the female climber with maximum nine ascents.
"Climbing Everest (Mt. Qomolangma) is my profession so I will continue the job as the chief guide for a few more years, "Kami Rita Sherpa told Xinhua.
Lakpa Sherpa said, "I will climb the mountain next year too making it for at least 10 ascents."
Similarly, the government honored the seven brothers, who set a Guinness World Records for the 61 combined ascents of Mt. Qomolangma by siblings. The seven Sherpa brothers from a single family conquered the tallest mountain between 1992 and 2017.
According to Nepal's Department of Tourism, the official government body which issues climbing permits for the Qomolangma expedition, 346 mountaineers from Nepali and foreign teams had taken the permits for expedition this year.
The expedition that began on May 13 this year ended last week along with the closure of favorable weather-window. This spring season, the mountain recorded at least five deaths including three Sherpa guides and two foreign climbers.
Mt. Qomolangma has not only been an identity of Nepal but also a major source of revenue collection.