Islamabad/New Delhi: Panic-stricken people rushed out of their homes - some of them
reciting verses from the Quran - as a 7.3-magnitude earthquake
shook Pakistan early Wednesday. Two women died and three people
were hospitalised after suffering heart attack.
The quake struck at 1.23 a.m., jolting people from their sleep.
The epicentre of the high intensity quake was around 50 km west of
Dalbandin, a town in the sparsely populated Baluchistan province,
the meteorological department said.
In October 2005, an earthquake measuring 7.6 on the Richter scale
struck in northern Pakistan, killing more than 70,000 people.
Geo News reported Wednesday that 35-year-old Haleema Bibi of
Jacobabad and Razia Bibi of Quetta died due to heart failure. In
Multan, three people were hospitalised after suffering from
Around a dozen people were injured as their mud houses collapsed.
As soon as the earth began to shake, people scurried out of their
homes. Television footage showed terrified people reciting verses
from the Quran.
Rescue services said they were on alert after the quake in the
sparsely populated area.
DPA reported that in Karachi, about 600 km to the south-east,
thousands fled their homes as they felt the earthquake, spending
the night out in the open in fear of aftershocks.
"I was drinking tea when the whole house started to shake,"
Mohammad Ramdan, a construction worker in Quetta, the capital of
Baluchistan, was quoted as saying.
"My God, it was so terrifying. I took my two children and wife and
left the house."
Pakistan's chief meteorologist Mohammad Riaz said there were very
few losses despite the magnitude because the epicentre of the
quake was quite deep and located in a thinly populated region.
The tremors of Pakistan were also felt in neighbouring India.
The tremors were felt in Delhi, Jaipur, Barmer, Ganganagar and
Jaisalmer in Rajasthan and parts of Haryana.
No casualties or damage have been reported in India.
Residents in New Delhi rushed out of their houses after feeling
"We were sleeping when suddenly we heard the sounds of furniture
rattling against each other. We immediately rushed out," said
Archana Kaul, a resident of Sarojini Nagar area of Delhi.
The fear was greater in the densely populated areas.
"The tremors were strong as they shook us out of sleep. But we
remained inside as we could not have reached an open space even if
we had rushed out," Shanti Luthra, a resident of Lakshmi Nagar, an
area with high density of population and closely built structures,
According to the India Meteorological Department, the earthquake
occurred at a depth of 74 km from ground level. An IMD official
said the area is located at the boundary of Indian and Eurasian
plates, and their movement caused the quake.
"Its a plate boundary region and plate activities were the reason
behind the quake," the IMD official told IANS.