Army Officer Becomes First Indian to BASE Jump

New Delhi, Oct 29 (IANS): An officer of the Indian Army Friday jumped off a 450-foot tower in the capital, successfully completing India's first BASE jump -- an adventure sport that is regarded highly risky as it is done from a fixed location at much lower altitudes.

Shortly after dawn, amid uncertain wind speed and hazy conditions, Lt. Col. Satyendra Verma, jumped off from the Pitampura TV tower kicking off the 100th anniversary of the Corps of Signals and the 25th anniversary of the Army Adventure Wing.

"Proud" to be a hardcore adventure enthusiast, the communication officer of the army has earlier done two BASE jumps in the US and Malaysia and has over 1,100 other jumps to his credit.

BASE jumping - an acronym for Buildings, Antennae, Spans and Earth - generally entails slower airspeeds than typical skydives because of the limited height. Jumping from higher altitudes is easier than BASE jumping because a jumper gets more time to control aerodynamics of his or her body and open a parachute.

"It was a thrill -- nothing more, nothing less. When you jump you forget everything. But it involves right preparation and when preparations are right, nothing will go wrong," Verma told IANS shortly after landing safely on ground after spending some 30 seconds in the air.


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