India earthquake raised to 6.9 magnitude, 12 casualties in India and Nepal, 2 aftershocks followed

By on Sep 19, 2011 in Asia, Natural Disasters, World Comments

The strong earthquake that hit the northern part of India on Sunday, September 18, was raised to magnitude 6.9 and has claimed twelve lives in India and Nepal as of this writing.

Rescue workers checking the collapsed wall
of British Embassy in Kathmandu, Nepal

Image Credit: Prakash Mathema/AFP/Getty Images

As reported earlier, the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) declared the India earthquake to have a 6.8 magnitude in which its epicenter at 68 km (42 miles) northwest of Gangtok, Sikkim.

The said earthquake was noted to have occurred at 6:10 p.m. (local time) on Sunday night and had a depth of 20.7 kilometers (12.9 miles), with no tsunami warning being issued.

Nevertheless, USGS revealed that a 4.8-magnitude aftershock occurred around 30 minutes later and was followed by another aftershock with a magnitude of 4.6 at 7:24 p.m, or more than one hour later.

According to, there are now seven casualties in Sikkim and 33 people were injured, while two buildings in Gangtok have collapsed and others have developed some cracks.

Apparently, the earthquake, which Sikkim was hit the most and is located near the borders of Nepal, with the neighbor country reported to have five casualties with three of them from Kathmandu, the country’s capital.

Meanwhile, Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh have already talked with Sikkim’s Chief Minister Pawan Chamling, but noted the full extent of the damage is not yet known.

Electricity and some telephone service were reportedly cut in most of the affected areas and five Indian Air Force planes were deployed to send relief operations along with rescue teams.

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