An earthquake struck remote western Nepal on Friday, resulting in the unfortunate loss of more than 150 lives. Security forces have been mobilized to aid rescue operations in the challenging terrains of Jajarkot and West Rukum, located 500km west of Kathmandu. The tremors were powerful enough to be felt in the Nepalese capital and neighboring Indian cities, including Delhi.The government reported around 375 injuries, with Jajarkot’s hospital overwhelmed by the influx of wounded individuals. Some have been airlifted to Kathmandu, but concerns arise about evacuations after nightfall. A survivor, Geethakumari Bista, shared her harrowing experience of losing her younger daughter during the sudden collapse of their house.Three additional tremors occurred within an hour of the quake, prompting local authorities to advise people to stay outdoors for at least 24 hours due to reported aftershocks. Videos circulated on local media depicted damaged multi-storied brick houses and rescue efforts in the dark to extract survivors from collapsed buildings.Unicef Nepal is assessing the impact on children and families, while Prime Minister Pushpa Kamal Dahal expressed deep sorrow and ordered immediate rescue and relief operations. A cabinet meeting is expected to decide on accepting foreign assistance, as offers from countries like China and India have been extended.Search and rescue operations face challenges due to landslides blocking roads triggered by the earthquake. The affected region’s residents describe houses collapsing and the overwhelming panic in the aftermath.Nepal, prone to seismic activity, has experienced earthquakes in the past, with the devastating events of 2015 causing widespread destruction. The recent earthquake, recorded at a magnitude of 5.6, adds to the region’s history of seismic challenges, with ongoing efforts to recover and provide aid to those affected.

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