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Moderate earthquake kills 1, injures 59 in eastern Kashmir

From Mukhtar Ahmad, CNN
updated 2:32 PM EDT, Wed May 1, 2013
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Quake also damaged scores of private and government buildings, government says
  • Tents and blankets have been sent to the affected areas to provide warmth and shelter
  • Officials have been asked to accommodate homeless people in government buildings

(CNN) -- A 5.8-magnitude earthquake killed one person and injured 59 others in Indian-administered Kashmir on Wednesday, a government statement said.

The earthquake also damaged scores of private and government buildings, particularly in the three mountainous districts of Doda, Kishtwar, and Ramban closer to the epicenter, which was on the border with the eastern neighboring state of Himachal Pradesh.

The U.S. Geological Survey reported the moderate quake's magnitude at 5.7. It said its epicenter was 17 kilometers (10.6 miles) northeast of Bhadarwah, India, and took place nine kilometers (5.6 miles) underground.

The government statement said a senior official is supervising the rescue and relief operation and reaching out to victims. A critically injured victim has been flown to the main city of Jammu for specialized treatment.

The statement said tents and blankets have been sent to the affected areas to provide warmth and shelter to the people who are now homeless.

"Teams are being sent to assess the loss to life and property in the tremor-hit areas," it said.

Government officials have also been asked to accommodate homeless people in community halls and other suitable government buildings, the statement said.

Kashmir was recently rocked by two moderate earthquakes that caused no casualties or property damage.

A 7.8-magnitude earthquake in 2005 claimed thousands of lives, left many people injured and severely damaged property in the Indian- and Pakistani-administered parts of Kashmir.

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