Strong 6.0 magnitude quake rattles India's Assam

New Delhi, India: A strong earthquake hit Assam in northeastern India early Wednesday, damaging buildings, but there were no immediate reports of casualties, residents said.

The US Geological Survey said the quake was of magnitude 6.0 with an epicenter in a hilly region near India's border with Bhutan. But the tremor and aftershocks were felt hundreds of kilometers away in the northern state of Bengal.

The quake badly shook Tezpur, a city of 100,000 people, about 45 kilometers (28 miles) from the epicenter. Residents said many people poured onto the streets and some buildings were damaged.

Part of Bhairabkunda hill in Udalguri district in Assam broke away after the earthquake that hit the state today at 7:51 a.m, the Hindu reported. 


 

On Wednesday morning, seven consecutive earthquakes jolted Assam and other northeastern states, causing severe damage to buildings and forcing people to flee their homes.

The first of the 6.4 magnitude earthquakes, with an epicenter 43 kilometers west of Tezpur, the district headquarters of Sonitpur district in Assam, was felt at 7.51 a.m., according to Regional Meteorological Centre (RMC) Deputy Director Sanjay O'neil Shaw.


The impact was felt across nearly the entire Northeastern area, as well as parts of West Bengal. It was quickly accompanied by tremors of 4.7, 4, and two 3.6 magnitudes at 8.03 a.m., 8.13 a.m., 8.25 a.m., and 8.44 a.m.

ground visuals from the affected regions show moderate to extensive damage to properties with building and concrete structures suffering cracks and breakages. 


Even in the state capital, Guwahati, about 150 kilometers (95 miles) to the south, the quake shook buildings and left cracks in walls. Residents said at least two big aftershocks were felt.

The USGS said the quake hit at a relatively shallow depth of 29 kilometers (18 miles) at 0221 GMT in hills just north of Dhekiajuli, a town in a tea-growing district of northern Assam.

The Himalayan region is regularly hit by big earthquakes. A 1950 quake killed about 4,800 people in Assam and in Tibet.

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