The Hump WWII Museum dedicated to fallen airmen of the Allied forces was inaugurated by Arunachal Pradesh chief minister Pema Khandu and US Ambassador to India Eric Garcetti at Pasighat in East Siang district.
“This unique museum, second in Asia, pays tribute to the 1600 fallen US airmen, showcasing remnants of aircraft from World War II,” Khandu posted on X. The pilots of the Allied forces nicknamed the air-route from airfields in Assam to those in Yunnan in China ‘The Hump’ because their aircraft had to navigate deep gorges and then quickly fly over mountains rising beyond 10,000 feet, a state government statement said.
“We come here today not just to mark history but to make history. To see the ways with which each one of us is called not just to witness the past but to do something to change the future,” said Garcetti in a ceremony to mark the occasion. Reiterating that the US would always remain grateful to the people of Arunachal for saving lives and helping US pilots and soldiers during WWII while flying over ‘The Hump’, Garcetti said, “Such human values bind the two countries together in friendship.”
Approximately 400 US airmen are missing in India, most of whose remains are believed to be located in the Himalayan mountains in the Northeast, particularly in Arunachal Pradesh.
Around 590 aircraft on this route in the course of 42-month operation, taking the “lives of 1,500 airmen and passengers”. Most of these crashes took place in present-day Arunachal Pradesh. Since 2013, the US government has conducted several missions with the help of the Arunachal Pradesh government and the people of the state to locate remains of numerous aircraft and the victims of the Hump, an official said. The extremely difficult Hump route covered areas in Arunachal, Assam, Tibet, Yunnan (China) and Myanmar.