An official statement from the Moran Family:
We are deeply saddened by the tragic events unfolding in the Nanda Devi region of the Indian Himalaya.
As a family, we share the same emotions that all next of kin are experiencing in not knowing the whereabouts or wellbeing of those closest to us.
We are grateful to the Indian Mountaineering Foundation who are coordinating search and rescue efforts on the ground and in the air under extremely difficult conditions in a very remote area of the Himalaya.
The climbing group had set out to attempt an unclimbed, unnamed summit, Peak 6477m, and the last contact intimated that all was well and a summit bid would be made from a camp at around 5400m.
It is not entirely clear what happened from this point onwards or indeed the timeline of events. We do know that a British Mountain Guide who was in the area leading a trekking group, as part of the same expedition, was informed that the climbing group had not returned to basecamp as expected. He immediately went on the mountain to search for the missing climbers. There was clear evidence that a sizeable avalanche had occurred on the mountain and it seemed to be on or very near the route that would be taken by the climbing group. The Mountain Guide gave instructions to base camp to alert rescue authorities. The alarm was raised early on Friday morning 31st May.
Today we have been informed by the Indian Mountaineering Federation that an air search by helicopter has revealed the scale of the avalanche but no sign of the climbers, their equipment nor their tents.
We are pressing for the search area to be widened and continued until such time as firm evidence is found to ascertain the wellbeing or otherwise of all those in the climbing group.
We are grateful for all the support that has been offered to us and we will be sure to release any information as and when we receive it. In the meantime please respect the privacy that the next of kin of the climbers need as they seek solace at this harrowing time.
The Moran Family