Expert warns of strong earthquake in Kashmir

March 23rd, 2008 - 10:39 pm ICT by admin  


Jammu, March 23 (IANS) A geologist has pointed out a strong possibility of an 8-magnitude earthquake hitting Jammu and Kashmir where memories of the October 2005 tremor are still fresh in the minds of the people. “Several studies have suggested increase in the static stress towards the northwest and southeast of the rupture zone of the Oct 5 earthquake,” said M.I. Bhat, head of the Department of Geology and Geo-Physics at the University of Kashmir.

“This is a frightening news, particularly for the millions of people who live in the Kashmir Valley, which lies to the southeast and in close vicinity of the rupture zone,” said the expert who has worked as senior scientist at the Institute of Himalayan Geology, Dehradun.

“The October 2005 earthquake increased static stress toward the northwest and southeast of the epicentre of the quake - potentially advancing the triggering of impending earthquake,” Bhat said in his key-note paper on ‘Tectonic Geomorphology of the Pir Panjal Range’ at the two-day workshop on ‘Kashmir Earthquake and After’ at Jammu University here Sunday.

The 7.6-magnitude earthquake of Oct 8, 2005 had claimed about 80,000 lives along the Line of Control that divides Kashmir and flattened habitations. Its epicentre was Muzaffarabad, the capital of Pakistan-administered Kashmir.

In the past one month, Kashmir has recorded five mild-intensity tremors and the experts have warned that the intensity may increase any time.

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