Islamabad: A strong 6.6 magnitude earthquake hit near the coast of Pakistan's Balochistan province on Wednesday, creating panic among the residents.
The quake struck at 3:04 am (local time) and it's epicentre was 20 kilometres southwest of coastal city of Pasni at a depth of 25.9 km, according to US Geological Survey (USGS). Officials said that so far no losses have been reported from the area, but they were assessing the situation.
The tremor was felt in the strategic port of Gwadar, where China has invested heavily in developing a port linked to the USD 46 billion China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), as well as Makran and Pasni areas of Balochistan.
The quake struck Pakistan, just two days after a moderate intensity earthquake measuring 5.8 on Richter Scale hit northern India, tremors of which were felt in Delhi, followed by another quake yesterday measuring 3.6 in Uttarakhand.
Reema Zuberi of National Disaster Management Authority confirmed quake of 6.6 magnitude. However, USGS said its intensity was 6.3.
Dawn reported that Commissioner of Makran Division Bashir Bangulzai said that a complete survey of the Makran division had been conducted and no damage or casualties were found. Tufail Baloch, Deputy Commissioner Gwadar confirmed that no damage occurred in Gwadar either. The Sindh commissioner has been sent to Pasni to survey the area.
Pakistan straddles between the Indian and the Eurasian tectonic plates and is located on the Indus-Tsangpo Suture Zone, which is roughly 200 km north of the Himalaya Front, which makes this region highly susceptible to earthquakes. The region has the highest rates of seismicity and largest earthquakes in the Himalaya region, caused mainly by movement on thrust faults.
The country has suffered several earthquakes in recent years. One of the worst earthquakes to hit the country in recent years was in October, 2005, which killed over 74,000 people, mostly in the Pakistan-occupied-Kashmir (PoK) area.
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Updated Date: Feb 08, 2017 13:41:50 IST