A powerful earthquake measuring 7.9 on the Richter scale struck Nepal a few minutes before noon on April 25 and a series of after shocks struck killing hundreds as houses collapsed, centuries-old temples were leveled, and avalanches were triggered on Mt Everest where at least 18 people died at a base camp. Another 20 were killed in India, six in Tibet and two in Bangladesh, and two Chinese died at the Nepal-China border. The quake also jolted parts of North and Northeast India. Tremors were also felt in Delhi
The quake began to rumble across the densely populated Kathmandu Valley and spread towards the Himalayas and Tibet, south to the Indo Gangetic plains, east toward the Brahmaputra delta and west toward Lahore in Pakistan.
A magnitude 6.6 aftershock hit about an hour later and smaller aftershocks continued to jolt the region for hours, tumbling walls, swaying trees and crashing down power lines as large cracks opened up on the streets and clouds of dust swirled all round.
Within hours hospitals began to fill up with injured people.
One guide said an avalanche swept the face of Mt Everest and at least 8 climbers were killed and 30 injured.
India rushed aid and rescue teams as IAF aircraft evacuated Indian tourists stuck in Nepal. Indian PM Narendra Modi called a meeting of government officials to review the damage and disaster in parts of India that felt the tremors including Uttart Pradesh, Bihar and Sikkim as well as Assam. In Bihar some 30 were killed and 133 injured. Deaths have also been reported from Darbhanga, Supual, Saran, Madhubani, Lakhisarai, Araria,West Champaran and Sheohar.
Pakistan PM Nawaz Sharif has offered all possible help Nepal may need. The UK has deployed a team of humanitarian experts to Nepal. French President Francois Hollande says France is ready to respond to any request for aid and assistance. The US is to send a disaster response team.