Nepal Supreme Court orders reversal of ban on climbers with disabilities

Advocates argued that the restriction violates human rights.

Nepal’s highest court earlier this week ordered the government to reverse a rule banning blind mountaineers and double amputees from scaling mountains, including Everest, according to reports.

The Supreme Court ruling comes just months after Nepal’s government enacted several restrictions, barring people with disabilities, those under 16 years old and solo climbers from gaining climbing permits. 

The Himalayan Times on March 7 reported that complaints were filed by Madhav Prasad Chamlagain and a visually impaired climber named Armit KC, and the court heard arguments that the regulation violate human rights and the United Nations convention on rights of people with disabilities. 

The Times also reported that the court issued a show-cause notice to the goverment due within 15 days, ordering officials to answer why they implemented the provision in the first place.

The decision in December drew sharp criticism from around the world. The iconic mountain has been successfully scaled by several amputees and visually-impaired climbers in the past.