6.7 magnitude quake hits India, leaves 4 dead

January 4, 2016, 11:41am

AP on News24
Photo: iStock

Gauhati — A 6.7 magnitude earthquake hit India's remote northeast region before dawn on Monday, killing at least four people, injuring 100 others and causing damage to several buildings.

The death and injuries were caused by falling debris in and around Imphal, the capital of Manipur state, police said.

The powerful tremor left large cracks in walls and a portion of a popular market building collapsed in the state capital. The area is dotted with small houses. There are few tall buildings in the region, although a newly constructed six-story building collapsed in Imphal, the police control room said.

India's Meteorological Department said the epicenter of the quake was in Tamenglong region of Manipur state. It struck before dawn on Monday at a depth of 17km in the India-Myanmar border region.

The epicenter of the earthquake was 35km northwest of Imphal. The area is remote with poor cellphone and Internet connections, and information about conditions outside of major cities may take time to emerge.

People panicked and rushed out of their homes in Gauhati, the capital of neighboring Assam state, as they felt massive shaking at least twice within 60 seconds.

In Imphal, residents said furniture was knocked over and books fell off shelves.

"The ground swayed for almost a minute, jolting people awake in their homes," said one resident, Apem Arthur.

The tremors were also felt in Kolkata, the capital of West Bengal state.