Nehru Institute of Mountaineering (NIM) is rated as one of the best mountaineering institutes in India and also considered as the most prestigious mountaineering institute in Asia. The proposal to have a mountaineering Institute at Uttarkashi was mooted by the Ministry of Defence, Government of India and the Government of Uttar Pradesh in 1964. Uttarkashi was specially selected as the home of NIM, primarily because of its close proximity to the Gangotri region in western garhwal, which undoubtedly has the best climbing and training potential in India and perhaps in the world. Perched beautifully on the turtle back hill across the east bank of river Bhagirathi, the Institute overlooks the sacred town of Uttarkashi and the confluence of Indravati with the Bhagirathi. In a historic development in November 2001, with the newly formed State of "Uttaranchal" (now Uttarakhand) coming into existence, the Chief Minister of Uttarakhand became the Vice President of the Institute.