Aparna Kumar is the first woman IPS officer to conquer seven summits, racing ahead and ascending one mountain after another. The Seven Summits are the highest mountain summits on each of the world’s seven traditional continents. Getting to the top of any of them is considered a mountaineering challenge. Aparna, an IPS officer from Uttar Pradesh, accepted and completed the challenge. She is the country’s first IPS officer to accomplish this distinction.
She also holds the distinction of being the first officer to scale Mount Everest and the first woman to command the ITBP Academy in six decades. Aparna is now an inspector general in the PAC Central Zone and the Sports Secretary of the UP Police Board.
Aparna Kumar also served as a mentor on the first ITBP expedition, codenamed ‘Prakaram,’ which launched on August 7, 2021 from the 1st Battalion in Joshimath and returned on September 7 after successfully raising the tricolour at Mount Balbala top.
Aparna graduated from NLSIU in Bangalore in 1999 and was commissioned into the Indian Police Service in 2002. While commanding the PAC’s ninth unit, she developed a passion in hiking. She refined her abilities for working at high altitudes here.
Aparna stated that her interest in mountaineering equipment prompted her to enroll in a month-long basic mountaineering training at the Atal Bihari Vajpayee Institute of Mountaineering and Allied Sports in Manali in October 2013, followed by an advance course in July 2014, informed HS.
“In August 2014, I climbed Mount Kilimanjaro in Tanzania, Africa’s highest peak, and proceeded to train for the following adventure. In November, I climbed the Carstensz Pyramid peak in Indonesia’s West Papuan province, the highest peak in Australia and Oceania. I climbed Mount Elbrus and Mount Aconcagua in Argentina in 2015. In 2016, I climbed Mount Vinson Massif, Antarctica’s highest peak, hiking through ice and snow in -35 degree temperatures and hauling a sledge full of luggage to the top,? Kumar recounted. Four months later, she set another world record when she climbed Mount Everest in the same year.
Despite having pneumonia, she climbed the South Pole in 2019 with damaged specs and 35kg of heavy equipments. Six months later, she reached North America’s Mount Denali, which has a summit elevation of 20,310 feet above sea level, and so accomplished the “seven summits” challenge, being the first civil servant and IPS officer to do so.
“I was fascinated and enamoured by the mountains and chose to dive into the field of adventure sports during my service in PAC unit,” Aparna explained talking to HS. She went on to say that mountaineer Bachendri Pal was her inspiration, and that because of her, many girls and women who wished to try climbing gained their wings.
“I am currently intending to take up an expedition to the North Pole, but it was postponed owing to the Ukraine-Russia war. But now I’m ready to start in the last week of March,” Aparna explained.The UP government awarded her the ‘Rani Lakshmi Bai Puraskar’ in 2015 for her achievements and for being a role model for women. She was also awarded the Tenzing Norgay National Adventure Award by the President of India in 2018 for her mountaineering efforts.