An earthquake of 6.3 magnitude was felt across northwest India, including Delhi, late on Friday night with its epicentre in Tajikistan. Initial reports by the National Centre of Seismology suggested an earthquake of 6.1 magnitude with the epicentre in Punjab’s Amritsar. However, the report was corrected by NCS soon after.
“The epicentre is in the Hindu Kush Himalayan region where the Indo Australian plate is colliding with the Eurasian plate. It’s seismically highly active area. The tremors have been felt across Uttarakhand, Himachal Pradesh, Punjab, Haryana and Delhi NCR. However, we haven’t received any reports of damage yet,” JL Gautam, head of operations at National Centre for Seismology (NCS), said.
“As we know the Indian and the Eurasian plates are colliding, so the Himalayas are always active. This event happened towards the Eurasian plate but it was a very strong earthquake, so the energy was felt here also. Smaller aftershocks are possible but the source is very far so its unlikely to impact us,” AP Pandey, a seismologist at National Centre for Seismology, said.
People were seen rushing out of their homes in many parts of north India. “Not since the earthquake of 2005 have the tremors in Srinagar been bad enough to force me out of the house. I grabbed a blanket & ran. I didn’t remember to take my phone & so was unable to tweet “earthquake” while the damn ground was shaking,” National Conference leader Omar Abdullah tweeted.
Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal tweeted after the quake, saying he is praying for everyone’s safety. “Earthquake tremors felt in Delhi. Praying for everyone’s safety,” Kejriwal posted on Twitter.
Tremors were also felt in Pakistan’s Islamabad, Lahore and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and Punjab provinces. There were no reports of loss to life or property in the neighbouring country. The magnitude of the earthquake was 6.4, according to Geo news.