Tajikistan quake shakes parts of Pakistan

Tajikistan quake shakes parts of Pakistan

A strong earthquake struck Tajikistan on Friday and the tremors were felt as far away as north India and Pakistan, witnesses said. Many residents ran out of their homes, but no major damage was reported.

The U.S Geological Survey put the quake's magnitude at 5.9 and centred 35 km (55 miles) west of Murghob in Tajikistan, central Asia.

The Tajikistan Emergency Situations Ministry said the epicentre was 420 km (260 miles) east of the Tajik capital Dushanbe near the border with China.

Monitoring agencies in the region pegged the quake as being a bit more severe. India's National Center for Seismology said its magnitude was 6.3, while the National Seismic Monitoring Centre in Pakistan measured it at 6.4.

The Met Office said that jolts were felt in the capital Islamabad, parts of Punjab, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and Balochistan provinces as well as Azad Jammu and Kashmir and Gilgit-Baltistan.

It said the 6.4 magnitude quake originated at 10.02pm and its epicentre was Tajikistan. The earthquake struck at a depth of 80 kilometres, it added.

The Met Office issued a warning that aftershocks of minor intensity were expected.

The tremors caused panic in Islamabad, Rawalpindi, Lahore, Muzaffarabad and other areas, where people rushed out of their homes.

However, no casualties or loss of property were reported from any part of the country till late in the night. The exact situation in remote mountainous areas would be clear in the morning.

The National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA) is in contact with all provincial authorities and getting updates from across Pakistan, said Inter-Services Public Relations. So far no reports of any damage reported. NDMA is taking stock of the situation after earthquake and will keep informed the citizens, it added.