Experts Warn Of Massive Earthquake Soon
The earthquake measuring 6.7 on the Richter scale that rocked the whole of Northeast India on Monday and claimed a number of lives, has brought into focus the high seismicity of the region which is already highly prone to various kinds of natural calamities.
Quakes with higher intensity than the one that struck Manipur on Monday are likely to rock the region in future, according to the MHA's National Institute of Disaster Management (NIDM) . The tectonic shift that a series of recent earthquakes have caused in the region have re-ruptured the plates that had already developed cracks during previous temblors. This has led to conditions which might trigger multiple earthquakes which may go up to 8.0 in magnitude.
Northeast India is located in Seismic Zone V, a 'very high risk zone', and covers about 12% of the country's total geographical area and about 11% of the population. With the adjoining countries of Nepal, Bangladesh, Bhutan, China and Bangladesh sharing space in Zone V, what the Northeast requires is a very well-drawn up disaster preparedness plan and a detailed disaster mitigation policy.
Needless to say, the high seismicity of the region is due to the tectonic collision between the Indian and Eurasian plates in the north and the tectonic movement along the Indo-Myanmar boundary.
While Imphal does not have too many high rise buildings and continues to respect heritage structures built over 100 years ago, other state capitals in the region have all witnessed haphazard increase in the number of multi-storeyed buildings. Landslides triggered off by heavy rains have become regular features in most of these cities. Monday's tremor could be only another warning to the authorities and citizens for enhanced preparedness for effective response to earthquakes.
(With inputs from agencies)