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Several people dead after powerful earthquake hits Nepal, rattles New Delhi

An earthquake of magnitude
6.6 has struck Nepal, killing at least six people,
destroying multiple houses in the western district of Doti and
shaking the Indian capital New Delhi, authorities said.

Five other people were seriously injured as eight houses
collapsed early Wednesday, said Bhola Bhatta, Doti’s deputy superintendent of
police, confirming an earlier figure shared by home ministry
official Tulsi Rijal.

Local media showed visuals of mud and brick houses destroyed
by the quake and rescuers digging through the rubble to look for
survivors. At least two people are reported missing, said Nepali
army spokesperson Narayan Silwal.

A ground rescue team of the Nepali army has been rushed to the site, said spokesperson Silwal, and two helicopters were on stand-by in nearby Surkhet and Nepalgunj towns.

Kalpana Shrestha, a senior bureaucrat of Doti district, said details were being collected from villages near the epicentre and that one child was among those rescued from under the debris.

Prime Minister Sher Bahadur Deuba, writing on Twitter,
offered condolences to the families of the victims. “I have
instructed the relevant agencies to arrange immediate and proper
treatment of the injured and the victims.”

READ MORE: Deadly earthquake hits near Afghanistan’s Jalalabad

Nepal still rebuilding 

Nepal’s seismological centre set the earthquake at a
magnitude of 6.6. 

The European-Mediterranean Seismological
Centre (EMSC) had pegged the earthquake at a magnitude of 5.6.

The quake was centred about 158 km northeast of
Pilibhit, a populous city in the neighbouring Indian state of
Uttar Pradesh, and occurred at a depth of 10 km, EMSC added.

Media reports after the quake showed tremors were also felt
in New Delhi and surrounding areas, some 350 km from

Nepal is still rebuilding after two major earthquakes in 2015 killed almost 9,000 people, destroyed whole towns and centuries-old temples and caused a $6 billion blow to the economy. 

Doti is about 430 km west of the capital, Kathmandu.

Nepal’s tourism industry is on the mend

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