• EARTHQUAKE IN GUJARAT, INDIA •
On the 26th of January 2001, celebrated as the Republic Day in India, a massive earthquake measuring 7.5 on the Richter scale hit Bhuj in Gujarat.
Six aftershocks had been recorded according to weather agencies. The aftershocks ranged between 3.0 and 3.6 on the Richter scale. More than 300 aftershocks above magnitude 3 struck, which claimed more than 18,000 lives. An estimated 146, 751 people were injured in the January 26 earthquakes, according to the United Nations. An epidemic of measles also spread. Many hospitals had been destroyed. The few hospitals that were not severely damaged were operating at full capacity; Most of the victims are from the western Indian state of Gujarat (near Pakistan), with severe damage afflicting the city of Ahmadabad (population: 4.5 million) and the municipality of Bhuj (population: 175,000).
UNICEF reported that as many as 5 million children under the age of 14 may have been affected by earthquakes in Gujarat, including nearly 2.5 million who have been severely affected -- young people who have lost family members, homes, schools, and their sense of security; there have been many incredible stories of survival. A brother and sister in Bhuj were rescued after surviving for 10 days trapped on the second floor of their damaged building. The damage caused was quite high. The quake destroyed 90 percent of the homes in Bhuj, several schools, and flattened the hospital. In Ahmedabad, Gujarat's commercial capital, 50 multistory buildings collapsed and several hundred people were killed. Total property damage was estimated at $5.5 billion or more.
The state government of Gujarat received 388,987 blankets, 105,000 plastic sheets for shelter, and 64,272 tents from NGO’s. According to the UN, 813,914 homes have been damaged or destroyed in the hard-hit Indian state of Gujarat
37.8 million People have been affected in India. Thousands were homeless and in need of immediate relief including water, food, shelter, and protection from disease. 5, 266 planes carrying relief supplies landed at Ahmadabad airport. Electrical power has been restored in nine towns and 892 villages.