Earthquake felt in North India

Map: USGSNEW DELHI: Most parts of North India came under shock from an earthquake with its epicentre 269 km North East of Kabul in Afghanistan. The earthquake, of magnitude 7.7 on the Richter scale, damaged roads and electricity networks Kashmir.

The operation of Delhi Metro was suspended as a precautionary measure. Several buildings were evacuated. Mild shock was felt in Kochi also.

Many people ran out their houses and offices when the quake shook building around 2.40 in the afternoon in Delhi and elsewhere. Damage in Afghanistan and Pakistan is reported to be extensive. Many are feared dead.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi has ordered urgent assessment of the quake, and said India was ready to provide assistance wherever required, including Afghanistan and Pakistan.

USGS National Earthquake Information Center said that the earthquake occurred as the result of reverse faulting at intermediate depths, approximately 210 km below the Hindu Kush Range in northeastern Afghanistan. Focal mechanisms indicate rupture occurred on either a near-vertical reverse fault or a shallowly dipping trust fault. At the latitude of the earthquake, the India subcontinent moves northward and collides with Eurasia at a velocity of about 37 mm/yr.

Active faults and their resultant earthquakes in northern Pakistan and adjacent parts of India and Afghanistan are the direct result of the convergence between the India and Eurasia plates. This collision is causes uplift that produces the highest mountain peaks in the world including the Himalayan, the Karakoram, the Pamir and the Hindu Kush ranges.