At least 157 people have died and 197 people have been injured due to the 6.4 magnitude earthquake that occurred at 11:47 pm on Friday night with its epicenter at Barekot rural municipality-1 Ramidanda of Jajarkot.
As families slept in their mostly mud-brick homes, the people were trapped under the rubble. Most of the damage so far has been reported in Jajarkot and Rukum (West). The deceased are mostly from Jajarkot and Rukum West. 105 people lost their lives in Jajarkot and 52 in Rukum West.
Several aftershocks have since been reported. The shaking was also felt in the capital, Kathmandu, about 510 kilometres away.
Due to the earthquake, there has been a huge loss of people’s wealth.
This is the strongest earthquake that claimed hundreds of lives and damaged millions of properties in Nepal after the earthquake in April-May 2015 that killed about 9,000 people and thousands of houses as well as historically important sites were reduced to rubble.
The Government has deployed army helicopters for search and rescue, and dispatched additional medical personnel to regional and field hospitals.
According to the Ministry of Home Affairs, 375 people have been injured in the earthquake-affected areas so far. Private residences as well as government structures were also damaged by the earthquake.
Among those insured, 105 were in Jajarkot, 85 in Rukum West, three in Dailekh, three in Baitadi, five in Jumla and one in Rolpa. Some of them are serious.
Eight seriously injured people have been brought to Kathmandu and admitted to the Tribhuvan University Teaching Hospital. Many of those injured people are from the west and most of them are children and women.
The imminent winter has hit the people and they are in critical need of warm clothes and shelter, healthcare and food. According to the Disaster Preparedness and Response Branch under the Ministry of Home Affairs, 184 personnel of the Nepal Army, 827 of the Nepal Police and 328 of the Armed Police Force have been mobilized for rescue and relief in the earthquake-affected areas.
According to the Ministry sources, detailed information is being received from the districts and details of physical damage are being collected.
So far, the Ministry has distributed 500 tripals, 50 sleeping bags and 100 blankets have been distributed in Jajarkot under relief. Similarly, 100 tripals, 50 sleeping bags and 100 blankets have been distributed in Rukum Paschim.
Meanwhile, Health and Population Minister Mohan Bahadur Basnet said that the federal government will treat all those injured in the earthquake.
The federal government will bear all the treatment of those injured in the earthquake that occurred in Jajarkot and Paschim Rukum districts last night. The treatment expenses of the earthquake victims will be free.
Minister Basnet also informed that the Ministry of Health and Population, in coordination with the provincial government, has already reached the earthquake-affected areas with the necessary medicines and a team of doctors and health workers involved in the treatment.
Minister Basnet said that the National Trauma Center and Bir Hospital have been prepared for the treatment of seriously injured people who cannot be treated at local and state level hospitals.
In addition to this, Purva Araniko Yatayat Pvt Ltd has provided 4 buses free of charge for the affected people who want to go to the earthquake-affected district on the initiative of Health Minister Basnet.
Meanwhile, Minister Basnet has asked the doctors and allied organizations to start treatment quickly in view of the earthquakes in Jajarkot and Rukum.
China has said that it will provide relief materials worth ten million rupees for the earthquake-affected areas.
The Chinese ambassador to Nepal Chen Song has informed that relief materials worth 10 crores will be given from the fund established for South Asian countries.
According to Ambassador Song, the relief materials include tents and blankets and these materials will be delivered to the affected areas in a few days. He also informed that the rest of the relief materials will arrive in Nepal in a few days.
Also, the US Ambassador to Nepal Dean R. Thomson has said that the United States is ready to provide the necessary assistance to Nepal to recover from the damage caused by this earthquake. He also expressed his grief over the news of the loss of lives in the earthquake in Jajarkot and Rukum West last night.
Likewise, the Russian President Vladimir Putin sent a letter to President Ramchandra Poudel on Saturday expressing his grief over the loss of property caused by the devastating earthquake in western Nepal last night.
He expressed his deepest condolences to the Nepali victims of this natural disaster and wished for the speedy recovery of the injured.
Meanwhile, various political parties have sent rescue teams to the quake affected areas.
Also, the various political parties, high level government officials have also announced to contribute their certain salary amount to the quake affected people’s treatment and livelihood.
Also, according to the report, the United Nations agencies have been working for the necessary steps at the powerful 6.4M earthquake that struck vulnerable sites of Rukum (West) and Jajarkot.
The UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF) has been deploying relief teams and humanitarian supplies, including blankets and tarpaulins while the UN Satellite Centre (UNOSAT) has been activated to assess the damages via satellite.