Morning quake leaves many shaken

A 5.5 magnitude earthquake jolted the people of Bihar on Wednesday morning, just when they were settling down for work, however, there were no reports of any deaths, injuries or destruction from any part of the state.

By Dev Raj in Patna
  • Published 13.09.18
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Patna: A 5.5 magnitude earthquake jolted the people of Bihar on Wednesday morning, just when they were settling down for work, however, there were no reports of any deaths, injuries or destruction from any part of the state.

The earthquake struck at 10.20am and the tremors lasted for around 20 seconds shaking Assam, Bengal, Bihar, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Arunachal Pradesh, Nagaland, Mizoram, Manipur and Meghalaya.

Patna-based India Meteorological Department (IMD) scientist Anand Shankar said: "The epicentre of the quake was at Sapatgram in Kokrajhar district in Assam. It originated at a depth of around 13km. At 5.5 magnitude it was a normal earthquake, which doesn't cause damage."

"We have not received any reports about deaths or injuries due to the quake. No district has reported any damage due to the tremors," a state disaster management department official said.

People in almost all districts in Bihar felt the jolts, though those living in eastern districts such as Kishanganj, Purnea, Katihar, Araria, Saharsa, Supaul, Madhepura, Khagaria, Begusarai, Samastipur, Muzaffarpur, Sitamarhi, Bhagalpur, Munger, Patna, Jehanabad, Arwal and Bhojpur complained about powerful shocks enough to unnerve them.

Those in Patna, who felt the ground shake under their feet panicked and ran out of their offices and homes.

"I had just sat down on my chair to start the day's work, when it started shaking. I saw the water in my bottle on my desk tremble. Others too became alert and then somebody screamed that it was an earthquake. We all rushed out of the office," said Sanjay Kumar, an employee with a public sector bank in Patna.

Hundreds of government employees working at Vikas Bhavan and the main secretariat, who had reached their offices on time, scrambled down the staircases to assemble out in the open. The fear factor made the people remain outside for almost half-an-hour.

"Some of us panicked because of the memories of the devastating earthquake that had hit the region in April 2015. We cannot forget how tremors kept coming for months and we all could not even sleep properly," Siyaram Singh said.

Among those who were at home, some felt the shocks while others did not experience them. Leading to a situation in which they debated whether to flee or not and the moment passed.

The last powerful quake that affected the state was January 4, 2016. It was measured to be of 6.7 magnitude and had led to cracks in many old buildings.