KOLKATA: A strong earthquake in Myanmar measuring 6.7 on the Richter Scale shook parts of eastern India including Odisha, West Bengal and Bihar on Wednesday afternoon.
Large parts of Odisha including Khurda, Cuttack, Jajpur, Jagatsinghpur, Kendrapara, Bhadrak, Balasore and Mayurbhanj districts experienced tremors seconds after the earthquake hit Myanmar.
According to National Centre for Seismology, a unit of Ministry of Earth Sciences, the epicenter of the quake was in Myanmar and it occurred at 4:04 PM at a depth of 58 kms.
The India Meteorological Department which confirmed the news said that many parts of the State felt the tremors which left people panicky. In Bhubaneswar, people ran out to open spaces as the tremors lasted for several seconds. Those living in apartments had a scary experience.
This is the second earthquake to have occurred on the day. Earlier, an earthquake measuring 6.2 on the Richter Scale had struck Italy killing over 38 persons.
Metro services halted in Kolkata
Metro railway services were halted and an early holiday was declared at the state secretariat as tremors were felt in Kolkata and other parts of West Bengal.
Panicky people came out on the roads, vacating shopping malls, houses and multistoried buildings as the jolts were felt a little after 4 p.m. Metro railway services were halted as a precautionary measure and passengers asked to disembark at the nearby stations.
The services resumed after some time after the tracks were inspected and found undamaged. At the state secretariat Nabanna in neighbouring Howrah, the employees rushed out as the tremors lasting a few seconds shook furniture.
Soon after, an announcement was made over the secretariat public address system that the offices would be over for the day.
Tremors rock town in Bihar
People rushed out of their houses, shops and offices, but "No damage or loss of life has been reported. No damages to houses has been reported either," an official of the state disaster management department said.
The Patna meteorological department officials said the epicentre of the earthquake, measuring 6.7 on the Richter scale, was in Myanmar.
According to officials of the state disaster management department, the tremor was felt in Patna, Bhagalpur, Muzaffarpur, Darbhanga, Gaya, Purnea, Kishanganj, Madhubani, Jehanabad and Aurangabad, Raxaul, Motihari.
There were no immediate reports of loss to life or property. The northeast is one of the most earthquake prone regions in the world.
(With inputs from Agencies)