Quake toll in India goes up to 72


Courtesy BBC
Courtesy BBC

New Delhi, April 27 (IANS) The toll in India following Saturday’s earthquake has gone up to 72, with Bihar accounting for 56 deaths, a top official said on Monday.

Home Secretary L.C. Goyal, addressing the media at a joint press conference with Defence Secretary R.K. Mathur and Foreign Secretary S. Jaishankar, said 12 people died in Uttar Pradesh following the earthquake.

“The number of casualties is 72. It is 56 in Bihar, 12 in Uttar Pradesh, three in West Bengal and one in Rajasthan,” Goyal said.

He said 175 people were injured in Bihar, 35 in West Bengal, 70 in Uttar Pradesh, nine in Sikkim and seven in Rajasthan.

Saturday’s earthquake, measuring 7.9 on the Richter scale, and its aftershocks have left over 3,700 people dead and 6,500 injured in Nepal.





New Delhi (IANS): At least 36 people were killed and more than 100 injured in India on Saturday due to the massive earthquake that had its epicentre in Nepal. Prime Minister Narendra Modi held a high-level meeting on the situation and spoke with the chief ministers of the affected states.

Though Nepal was the worst affected with over 900 dead, India was not spared, as 25 people were killed in Bihar, 8 in Uttar Pradesh and 3 in West Bengal.

President Pranab Mukherjee wrote to the governors of Bihar, Uttar Pradesh, West Bengal and Sikkim, condoling the loss of lives.

Modi held a high-level meeting with senior ministers and officials and spoke with the chief ministers of Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, West Bengal, Sikkim and Madhya Pradesh.

“The prime minister was briefed on the inputs regarding the extent of damage to life and property received so far from various places in India and Nepal,” said a statement issued by the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO).

Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar said he has directed all army units to carry out rescue operations and extend full cooperation to local authorities.

In order to deal with the situation in the affected states, five teams of the National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) have already been sent — one to Gorakhpur in Uttar Pradesh and one each to Darbhanga, Supaul, Motihari and Gopalganj in Bihar.

Home Secretary L.C. Goyal said the impact of the earthquake was felt in many states in India, particularly in Bihar, Uttar Pradesh, Sikkim and West Bengal.

The ministry has been in constant touch with all the affected states to assess the situation. Each team of the NDRF consists of 45 personnel who are fully equipped with modern equipment to deal with search and rescue operations, he said.

The team also includes medical and paramedic personnel. The teams have equipment such as live detector machines, cutters which can cut steel, concrete and wood.

Goyal said the National Crisis Management Committee (NCMC) in the cabinet secretariat has already met and reviewed the situation through video-conferencing with the chief secretaries of the affected states.

The NCMC will be meeting regularly to take stock of the situation and the relief measures. The central government was in constant touch with the states and monitoring the situation very closely.

The states will be provided with all possible help from the central government, the statement added.

Giving details of the quake, L.S. Rathore, director general of the India Meteorological Department (IMD), said that after the earthquake, several aftershocks were felt in India too.

“These were aftershocks measuring five and above on the Richter scale,” he said, adding that the highest intensity aftershock measured 6.6.