Quake rocks Junagadh, one killed and two injured

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Junagadh, Gujarat, Nov 6 (UNI) An old woman was killed and two others seriously injured and several houses were damaged today when an earthquake, measuring 4.9 on the Richter scale, rocked the Saurashtra region followed by several mild tremors in South and Central Gujarat.

Officials in the worst affected Junagadh district said 78-year old Jodhibehen Bhanabhai Devdhariya was buried under the debris of her collapsed house around 1515 hours at Hiranwel village in Talala taluka. Cracks have appeared in several houses, they said.

Jamnagar, Porbander and Rajkot regions of Gujarat also experienced tremors, damaging houses in at least eight villages.

According to the Met department, the first quake was recorded at 0558 hrs and epicentred at a latitude 21.2 degrees North and longitude 70.5 degrees East.

''After the first quake of 4.8 intensity, there have been more than 20 mild aftershocks between 0611 hrs and 1345 hrs.

The second tremor, measuring 4.9 on the Richter scale, was experienced at 1509 hours. It was epicentred at latitude 21 degree North and Longitude 70.4 degrees East.

''Walls of 30 houses in eight villages of Talala taluka developed cracks. The affected villages include Hiranwel, Moruka, Surawa, Rasulpara, Jalpar, Akolwadi, Sasan and Bhalchchel,'' said officials.

''Villages of Visavadar, Maliya-Hariya, Mevarada, Keshodh and Veraval also experienced aftershocks,'' officials said.

Meanwhile, officials informed that a team of seismologists from Pune is expected to arrive in Junagadh district late tonight.

According to information reaching here tonight, the worst affected Junagadh district witnessed wall collapse of over 30 houses and cracks in several hundred houses in the eight worst-affected villages -Hiranwel, Moruka, Surawa, Rasulpara, Jalpar, Akolwadi, Sasan and Bhalchchel.

Meanwhile, official sources said the tremors were a result of rising of underground water levels, caused by the heavy rainfall that lashed Saurashtra, Central and North Gujarat during the last monsoon season.

Authorities have installed two digital seismo meters in Junagadh district to observe and study the underground movements caused by the tremors to release its energy.

UNI

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