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Wednesday, 7 February, 2001, 12:21 GMT
Indian quake: Tell us what is happening

A powerful earthquake has struck north west India and parts of Pakistan. The death toll could be as high as 20,000.

BBC News Online has had hundreds of emails from people trying to get news of friends and relatives - have you had any success? Please let us know

Are you in any of the areas hit by the quake? Tell us your experiences.

HAVE YOUR SAY

Click here to read your messages from the disaster area and from those who are looking for more information.

Click here to read a selection of your stories from the quake.

It is times like these that make us realise how unpredictable and delicate life is. Wake up Indians and Pakistanis, we are one. Let's work together to make this world a better place to live in. May God give strength to people who have lost their loved ones.
Veejay Jadhaw, USA/ Pakistan


My heart goes out to all those affected

Harmit Singh Kamboe, India
My heart goes out to all those affected. In a matter of days life will be back to normal for the rest of us but the folks affected have been setback by many years. This should make India and Pakistan realise how closely our fate is entwined as neighbouring nations. We are in this together and must move forward to tackle other issues that we jointly face - poverty, poor health, low educational standards, incompetent and corrupt state apparatus and totally inadequate infrastructure.
Harmit Singh Kamboe, India

I am saddened by the great loss of life and anguish of the Gujerati people. However, I cannot but help notice the striking contrast between the international community falling over themselves to help in this disaster but curiously indifferent about the ongoing tragedy only a few miles away in Afghanistan. Those innocent men, women, and children are suffering from drought, domestic war, external sanctions, extreme cold, and suffered from 2 earthquakes in the last 3 years. Regular UN calls over the last few months for donors to come forward has fallen on deaf ears. Gujerat will be able to quickly rebuild itself thanks to its wealthy ex-pats and booming Indian economy. The same cannot be said of the Afghan people.
Benares, England

I heard the news at 7 AM on the way to work, I was simply shocked! I wanted to know right away as to where the earthquake hit and if my loved ones were okay. Later, I found out the extent of the damage and that mostly it was confined to Bhuj and Ahmedabad area. My family members are in Bareilly U.P. and are safe. I send my condolences and best wishes to the victims and their families. I pray to God Almighty to help whoever is in pain and anguish. My sister army unit happens to be in Bhuj, I see their pictures helping people in Bhuj and Ahmedabad and that makes me immensely proud of my colleagues and the men who are doing a wonderful job in helping the effected people.
My Dad was in the Royal Corps of Signals during the British era and he used to tell us about the great Quetta earthquake in the NW Frontier (around 1920) now in Pakistan. Quetta was razed to the ground. It is very sad!
Major Rajinder Pandher (Rajinder.pandher@ebay.sun.com) USA

My sincere condolences to those who lost their beloved ones in this horrible natural disaster. May God bless those who lost their lives and bestow upon their families and friends patience and peace.
Hesham, New Zealand

I would like to extend my heartfelt condolences to all the bereaved families in India and Pakistan.
Leo T, Indian in Austria


I offer my condolences to all those who were affected by the earthquake

Kiran Adimatyam, USA/ India
I offer my condolences to all those who were affected by the earthquake. As Emma said, it's not the time for criticism. It's time to act. But, we have to take precautionary measures to help people live when these type of natural disasters happen. It happened the same way in 1998, when a ferocious cyclone hit Gujarat. I was there at that time and I can see how disastrous the situation would be. I pray to God to help people and we have to do something from our end.
Kiran Adimatyam, USA/ India

This is not only an Indian disaster but also a global one which is symptomatic of the illness that Mother Earth is going through because of us. I consider myself a global citizen and I feel Sharon makes an interesting point about nuclear testing. We need to STOP violence between each other and to nature. Peace in our hearts will create peace externally. I have not heard from my family in Ahmedabad and I am sending them my thoughts of peace. Please consider observing a moment of silence sometime today for all the souls in that area.
Rajesh Patel, India/ Kenya/ UK/ USA

My heart goes out to those people who have lost family and friends in this quake. India as a nation has great ability to mobilise support from its own citizens, and every citizen is ready to provide as much help as possible. The Indian spirit is shaken by this disaster, but certainly is as strong as ever.
Siva Sreeraman, USA

It is very sad that natural disasters like an earthquake can still cause so much damage to human lives. In Third World countries like India, Nepal and Pakistan, where a common man cannot build a home safe enough to protect his family from floods, cyclones or quakes, is there a logic for war? A child who lost a parent will still be an orphan. Be it on one side of the border or the other.
Hayat, Islamabad, Pakistan

A co-worker of mine was born in that region and still has relatives there. My heart and sympathy goes out to all the victims of this terrible tragedy.
Roger Dobrickq, USA


I pray to God not to repeat this horrible episode anywhere in the world

Kalpesh Trivedi, Petlad, India
I am a lecturer in Physics at PETLAD, just 60 Kms. away from Ahmedabad. We were busy in 52nd Republic Day celebration on College ground. Suddenly we found ourselves vibrating and all of us fell down on the ground. Of course everyone was safe but those who were in multi storey buildings were not lucky as we were. I humbly all the readers of this session to donate kindly for the victims of earthquake. I pray to God not to repeat this horrible episode anywhere in the world.
Kalpesh Trivedi, Petlad, India

At last I was able to call my family in Ahmedabad who is living in one of the high rise building at the Satellite Complex, Satellite area of Ahmedabad. They are all safe. Some cracks have been developed in the building and hence they have evacuated the house. They told me that lots of buildings nearby are devastated due to earthquake. Satellite Tower and Satellite Centre is OK. Thank God. And pray for all Ahmedabadis. My heart is with all those are affected and are struggling hard to survive from this Natural Disaster. I pray this should not even happen to our enemies also. Should anybody require more information I can be contacted at my email address: kiranchokshi@usa.net, chokshi@enscpb.u-bordeaux.fr
Kiran Chokshi, Bordeaux, France/Ahmedabad, India

I am from Jamnagar a city in Gujarat we are also effected by the earthquake but the damage over here is less and the relief operation is quite good over here, and I want to also say that people are blaming the government because of lack in relief work but I can say that what could the government do?
Nimish Patel, India

I had slept late so I woke up at around 8.30. I was having my cup of tea when suddenly, the window glasses seem to tremble. I couldn't guess what was happening. As the tremor increased I rushed to switch off the electric main supply and went straight out of the house. It was as if someone was shaking us off our feet. Luckily we weren't staying in flats. But many were not so lucky. Many of them couldn't even have time to react. It was so fast that very few could react. It was one of the bad experiences in life. The government seems to be incompetent to face such a huge casualty. The NGO's should come forward and help.
Ajit, Ahmedabad,India

I live in Drive-In area of Ahmedabad. I have witnessed a horrible experience of my life. I will be happy if I could be help for someone. Please feel free to contact me on Mukul.Padhya@usa.net. If you need any details of your relatives and friends. I will try my best to help you.
Mukul Padhya, Ahmedabad, India

I am reporting from Railway Staff College,Baroda, a city 300km south of Ahmedabad. Baroda is totally safe , No casualty, no damage. But the rest of the state is troubled. The government is doing best But there should be a national disaster programme, to provide relief operation at an accelerated pace.
Alok Kumar, India ( Gujrat (Baroda))

My family is from a village called Madhapur 3km outside Bhuj. We have had some news about the area around Bhuj and news for our village is that the old town (Junavas) has most damage, but the Navavas part of town has escaped with little damage. We are still anxiously waiting for information about our relatives in the region. Any news please post on this site.
Lata Pindoria, UK

I am currently in Mumbai. I would like to help the quake affected people. If some NGOs or other organisations can guide us as to how we can help them it would be very helpful. We have already started collecting clothes and donations to give to the organisations. Please do let us know if our physical help is required in Gujarat.
Sathiyanarayanan, India

We are nearly 750 Indians studying here at the University of Texas at Arlington. When we heard the news on Republic day, we were nearly in tears. We are still not completely out of this shock even after 3 days. We could really feel the agony and misery which our brothers/sisters are suffering at this time. It would be so nice if the people in US come forward and donate as much as they can - so please contact the nearest Indian community centre and offer your help.
Nachiappan, Texas,USA


First of all, my sincere condolences towards the families of the lost ones and my countrymen

Sayondeep Deb, USA

First of all, my sincere condolences towards the families of the lost ones and my countrymen. I really happy to see that all countries are helping out India in it's time of need. But, surprises me is the fact that the US being the richest and most powerful country in the world as they boast, offered only a total amount $45,000. This is a joke. I think it's shameful of the US to send such a small and minute amount. I guess it just goes to show their feelings towards Third World countries.
Sayondeep Deb, USA

Any news of Borsali Apartments in Khanpur, Ahmedabad? I am worried about my family there. Please contact me with details of damage to the site, area. etc. Thanks. May God give strength to bear this tragic loss.
Yasmin, London, UK

I am posting this message here for Mr. Kishore N. Pidoria who has been unable to make contact with his parents. Their names are Mr. and Mrs. Naranbhar Pidoria. They live near Bhuj - Mandvi on Highway Road. If anyone has any information on their whereabouts please call or email any of the below phone numbers: Mr. Harish Karai (see BJP) in India - 011-91-2832-82218 Their son in London - 011-44-1204-413-409 In America - 973-472-6480 or email at vrdas7@msn.com
Chandra Das, USA

If you have any information about Mr. Shyam Valdiya (senior scientist at ISSRO) his wife Godaveri & their two sons- Prateek & Prerak Valdiya, please contact me by leaving a message on this board. They live in the Satellite area. Shyam works for ISSRO, so you can also try contacting anybody connected to the organisation or the family. Thank you.
Urmila Mohan, USA

I'm worried about my grandparents in Anjaar. I'm in Jamaica W.I. Yesterday's news said Anjaar is one of the badly affected areas. If anybody has any kind of information regarding this small village, please let me know. I've been trying to call since I heard about the quake but couldn't get through.
Mahesh Chatani, Jamaica


Companies can team up with NGOs to form disaster management groups and provide leadership.

Vivek Kapadia, USA
I have seen the effort carried out by the government of India when there was a natural calamity, be it floods in north-east India, cyclones in southern India or the earlier earth-quake in Maharastra, and every time the administration and army provided a quick and effective response. Now with many big companies having interests in India, it is not unreasonable to expect their participation in the relief effort. The logistics, transportation, telecom, IT, and health care companies can team up with NGOs to form disaster management groups and provide leadership.
Vivek Kapadia, USA

We are students at the Mudra Institute of Communication in Ahmedabad and would like to help in any way possible. We have spare rooms in our hostels which can be used to put up those who have lost their home. Please feel free to contact us at s_narain@hotmail.com and 917-39951, 39950, 39949,39948, 39947, 39946
Sonal Narain, India

A tremor was felt early Sunday around 6:30 AM, strong enough to wake us up and we hurried out on the streets. I live in the Navrangpura area of Ahmedabad. Anybody who wants any information regarding their relatives over here, may freely contact me at manishpp@hotmail.com.I shall extend all the possible information within my reach.
Manish Patel, Ahmedabad, Gujarat, India

I am resident of Ahmedabad. I was standing besides Mansi bulding which collapsed. There's not enough equipment to lift debris, to find people. Rescue work is going on very slowly.
Hitarthi Panchal, India

When the earthquake struck I was flying a kite on the terrace. My town Nagpur is about a thousand kilometres from Bhuj. I think we are must take some blame because we made the buildings which are responsible for killing so many.
Ashish Dagwar, India


The government rescue has badly failed

Ajay, India
Sadly the government rescue has badly failed. I am calling on you and the overseas governments to please help us in whatever way you can. Don't wait for our arrogant government to call you, we the people are calling for any help possible.
Ajay, India

There is little point criticising India's inability to cope with the current situation. At the moment, what is really needed is maximum support from the authorities worldwide. The rescue operations can then become more powerful, structured and hence effective.
N Raichura, United Kingdom

I am a student in New York. My parents and grandparents are in Ahmedabad, I have been in constant touch with them. My parents have been sleeping for the last two days in their car.
Samantha Mehrishi, New York

I'm in Ahmedabad and would like to help in any way possible. If people need places to stay, we can accomodate them in some of our hostels, as we study in the Mudra Institute of Communications, Ahmedabad. Please feel free to contact any of us at 917-39951, 39950, 39949
Sonal Narain, India

Anybody who wants particular information about his/her relatives in Ahmedabad, they may write me on nitupatel@icenet.net. I will try my best to give information.
Nitu Patel Anand, India

I live in a city about 300km south of Ahemdabad called Baroda and we were literally rocked out of our beds. I was sleeping and the quake woke me up. We all ran out of the house. Everyone in our community was outside, but luckly nothing disastrous happened.
Govind D. Jagannath, India


I need information on the situation in Navrangpura

Niharica, India
I need information on the situation in Navrangpura. Especially the CEPT-college of architecture in Ahmedabad. This is indeed a testing time for everyone. I'd be really thankful for any info provided. My e-mail: cryptic_q@yahoo.com
Niharica, India

I have heard some news about the surrounding villages of Bhuj. Have heard gams such as Samatra, Kera, Madhapur, Fotdi have had relatively minor damage. Gams such as Sukhpur, Mezapur have had some damage, but do not know of what effect. Generally it appears that Bhuj was the worst hit compared to the surrounding villages. Our hearts go out to all those in Gujarat.
Khimji Varsani, London, UK

I was in bathroom just a strange sound came which I thought was coming out of my shower but I realized oh god it is an earth quake. I just pulled a towel around me and ran towards my door. I am thankful to God Allah who saved me from accidental death
Billal Rajpoot, Karachi, Pakistan

I have been trying to get information of a small town, Madhapar, 3km outside Bhuj. So far, it seems no media has reached there at all other than having to suffice with 'pass this message' type of information on. Being highly inaccurate until media get there, it's very worrying to not know the exact situation. Apparently mobile phones are operating in most of Ahemadabad and Bhuj. So if anyone has any such numbers of persons there, maybe a good port to call. Just to pass my regards and best wishes for everyone here and there in Gujarat at the moment.
Dinesh (Halai) Patel, Harrow, UK


Suddenly the windows and doors started to rattle

Naval Vithalani, Bombay, India
I was sleeping as it was a day off ... and suddenly the windows and doors started to rattle and my speakers fell down...so I jumped out and asked everyone in the family to abandon the building. It was a mighty jerk. As we raced down, we asked everyone in the building to go out in the open. Old people and children were scared and yesterday none of the kids were ready to go out as they were very scared. I hope it never comes back. Our prayers are with thousands of our brothers in Gujarat and hope that all of them are safe.
Naval Vithalani, Bombay, India

I was sleeping and then I felt that someone was shaking me. And when I saw my room mate was standing there holding my cupboard.
Mirza Ali Nasir, Pakistan/Karachi

It was heartbreaking and no one knew what was happening as for most of them had never experienced an earthquake before. May God bless everyone and save the kids.
Mukul Karandikar, Ahmedabad, India

I was deeply hurt and shocked at the extent of the tragedy. I offer my heartfelt condolences to all the people who have become victims of this killer quake. In this hour of grief I am surprised that some people here are interested in criticising the Indian government of its inefficiency. There is a time for everything and right now all we need to give is our support in whatever way possible. I am confident that the government can handle this disaster. Just take a look at how here in the UK, despite all its disaster management could not do much, and was totally unprepared when the recent floods submerged many parts of UK. And these floods are not even ten percent in magnitude of the type of floods we have in India.
Sandesh D'Souza, Bedfordshire, UK

I was very shocked when I hear about the earthquake in Gujarat. I would like to request the Indian government to provide all necessary help to rescue the people and ensure that the food, clothes and shelter are provided immediately. All political parties in India should strengthen the government to do their job in this regard.
P. Venkatesh, India

Urgent help is needed: My Cousin Mr. P.Sundaresan, a sergeant in Indian Air Force, working at Bhuj Air Base, his wife Mrs. Geetha- Sundaresan and their two small children are there at Bhuj. Can anybody give me any information to contact them? My email is santhosh@arkinsys.com
Santhosh.V.Krishnan, Madras, India

Go to www.ahmedabadcity.com to get the list of the buildings that collapsed sorted by area due the earthquake. Let me know if anybody has any information about Nadiad, which is about 45km from Ahmedabad.
Axay Patel, Canada


I've never seen such a severe earthquake all my life

Sanjay Thakkar/Alpesh Bait, Ahmedabad, India
We are sleeping in our bed at 8.47am. Suddenly our bed started shaking as if our building was going down. We felt that we were sitting in a luxury bus and it was going very fast from bumps and dumps. The people of our apartments were shouting "come down come down", our television and cupboard were shaking like some soul was doing so. We could not understand what was happening to our apartment as we were still half asleep, we were shocked when we went down on the road to save our lives and heard from our neighbours that there was a severe earthquake. I've never seen such a severe earthquake all my life - it affected the golden city Ahmedabad like anything. We pray to god to save all the lives in the whole world.
Sanjay Thakkar/Alpesh Bait, Ahmedabad, India

I live in Surat in Gujarat. This earthquake came in two steps. It began slowly, and then within seconds the second spell was very high and dangerous, at about 8.55 am on 26th January which is a holiday for all Indians - so all people were sleeping or doing snacks or pray or bathe. I thank God that it didn't happen over night otherwise the death toll would have been much higher.
Kiran Patel, India

Like many others from Madhapar (Navavas) I am desperately trying to get in touch with my parents. Telecommunication links are partially restored, but I can not get in touch with anyone. One bit of information I got is an emergency number in Bhuj which is +912832 50444. This is constantly engaged but If anyone does manage to get through, please get in touch and post any information on this website. There is so much flying around on the news, but nobody is talking about villages surrounding Bhuj. My email address is: halai_dilippremji@freeserve.co.uk
Dilip Premji Bhimji Halai, UK, London

As images of the destruction across the border filter through the news, we should realise how close we all came to being hit by this earth quake and thank God. And I think the authorities here in Karachi should at least keep us updated about the imminent aftershocks rather than let rumours fly and disturb people unnecessarily. I spent last night standing on the street outside my apartment buildings because someone had announced at a local mosque that an earthquake was coming. I think there is already enough panic in the air!
Saba, Karachi, Pakistan

I am a victim of the earthquake. When I was talking with my uncle on the phone, suddenly the earth takes the breath I had cut down the phone and within 39 second the whole A'bad lost several lives. People can build buildings of 12 or 15 storeys within a year or six months but nature can remove it within seconds.
Kamlesh Dave, India


There is chaos all around. We are lucky to be alive

Manu Anand, India
I am here at the IIMA, the most prestigious institute for MGT Studies. We were in the class when it stuck. For a second it seemed that we were all dead. The 36 of us rushed out from the first floor. The stairs were swinging. It was horrifying to see the water tank swaying. The dorms of the institute have also been damaged. The classes were suspended for a week. Many of the faculty houses have been severely damaged. The scene in the city is worse. There is chaos all around. We are lucky to be alive. May God rest all those who perished in peace.
Manu Anand, India

I was on the 3rd floor of a hotel in the Gujarat College area when everything started shaking all of a sudden. All the guests in the hotel ran down the stairs trying to find the exit door. By the time we reached the ground floor, the swimming pool at the terrace had cracked and water was flowing out from all sides of the building. More than 75% of the buildings in the city have developed cracks with the worst affected areas being Vastrapur, Satellite and Maninagar. In a matter of seconds huge buildings were reduced to rubble.
Sriram Iyer, India

I am from Karachi. When the earthquake hit this morning I was fast asleep but suddenly I felt if someone was moving my bed. I got up and it looked as if the roof would fall down. It was really awful to know that it's an earthquake. There isn't much loss in Pakistan but I really feel sorry for those who have lost their loved ones. May Allah have mercy on us. A really scary experience.
Nedah, Karachi, Pakistan

Does anyone know the situation, how badly other small villages are affected surrounding Bhuj? I am from Baladia and would like more info on affected areas. Also there is a temple in Bhuj, Shree Swamminarayan Mandir, Pareswar Chorke Bhuj Kutch. If anyone has any news please let me know.
Harish R Hirani, India (Bhuj-Baladia)

The most damaged area in Ahmedabad in terms of building collapses are Satellite and Maninagar. Casualties are reported the most in Ranip and Bapunagar. I am lucky to say that my family is safe and sound in Shahibaug. However I pray for the well being of everyone out there and to their relatives wherever they are. Let us have faith and keep our calm.
Dinesh Somani, Saudi Arabia

I am in Finland at the moment and one of my realtives is in Baroda. I have been trying to get them all day but to no avail. I hope they are fine. May God be with the them.
Arvind Krishnan, India

We have just heard from a friend of our parents. They live in Bhuj, in a building called Golden Palace, which is still standing. Apparently, the old side of Bhuj is worse than the new, but the damage is bad. We have no other news from any of our other relatives, or about any other areas.
Vijay and Anita, Harrow, UK

I work as a software engineer and normally have a hectic sedentary schedule. On the 25th, I returned from my office after a hectic schedule from my office, here in Bombay. Next day being a holiday, I settled down to have a long peaceful sleep. And, I was woken up at around 840am, and I found my bed rocking, as if I was travelling in a truck, on a bumpy road. The window sliding pane was rattling and I could clearly see myself shaking. As I stood, I could feel the vibrations. Down below, I could see through my window, people gathering in the streets, and I too rushed for the exit, still in my night-suit...
Rana Nandi, India

I hope and pray that as many as possible are rescued from the rubbles alive. It is a very sad day for both the people of India and Pakistan. Perhaps a generous gesture on the part of either may bring the divided people a little closer ...
Kalidass, Singapore

Well I was in school for a Republic Day function and I hardly felt a thing. When I came back home along with my friends my grandma told me there was a quake. I thought that as I didn't feel it it must have been like 3.9 on the Richter scale, but it turned out to be a lot more. Anyway, a lot of things shook here.
Ameya Prabhu, Bombay, India


Anybody wants particular information about his/her relatives in Ahmedabad, they may write me on musakpal@rediffmail.com

Manan, India
There is too much disaster in Ahmedabd. And particularly the buildings which were not more than 10 years old, having pillars on the ground (parking) and most of them are of 4 to 5 floors. Anybody wants particular information about his/her relatives in Ahmedabad, they may write me on musakpal@rediffmail.com. I will try my best to give information.
Manan, India

I just came back from Ahmedabad and the destruction of the city and its people is complete. Scores of people are living on the footpath, including the well offs. It looks like the killer quake has killed everything on its way -- from school kids to infants. I appeal to the world to pray for the dead and care for the living -- because we are all part of the same human race.
Dev, Bombay, India

I am from Mumbai, called up my sister at Ahmedabad at 14.00 hrs and still the people are in the grip of fear of a quake. The government is doing the level best. In the next 48 hours they may have to face another one.
N.Lakshmi Narasimhan, India

I have spoken to the Collector's office in Ahmedabad who says the some people have arrived there from Bhuj. They are saying that Bhuj was the worst hit but the surrounding villages do not have very much destruction. Without having spoken to our relatives we cannot be certain of this but it is a glimmer of hope for all of us who cannot be there in person.
Ashok Hirani, United Kingdom

I am residing in Chennai. I was riding my scooter on my way to work. It was about 8.50 am yesterday. When I was taking a turn, suddenly my scooter skidded off and I fell down. For a moment, I did not know anything. I was riding that route every day for almost two years. Never has anything of that sort happened to me. In a confused state, I resumed my journey and reached my work place. Only on seeing the reports of earth quake and its effect in Anna Nagar, my place of residence, and the time of occurrence, did I realise that it may have the result of quake. I would like to know if anyone had similar experience. I pray to the Almighty that those affected by the quake get the relief and also that their sufferings end.
Hari B., India

Few of my friends stay in Ahmedabad. I have not got any news from them and I am very much worried about them. I am not getting a telephone line from yesterday. Suggest me a method to communicate with them.
Miss Megha Roy, India


Even after facing many tremors in Bhavnagar our city is still standing on its feet

Vijayraj Jadeja, India
"God is the superman." Even after facing many tremors in Bhavnagar our city is still standing on its feet. Least casualties reported here. One thing I can not accept: in this modern age of satellite no news channel is taking photographs of the worst affected region of Bhuj! How can it be possible? This proves that Bhuj is the worst affected area among all. I prey for them.
Vijayraj Jadeja, India

I've my relatives in Bhuj. I tried to call the help line, but couldn't get through. Please let me know is there is anyway to get latest info about Bhuj, on the net or through phone? My e-mail: sridharan_c@yahoo.com
Sridharan, Singapore

After a long time I was able to reach my sister on the phone at Ahemedabad. She is fine however fear still persists for further quakes within the next 48 hours. Let us pray to God to save us from further any such damages.
N.Lakshmi Narasimhan, India

It is one of the greatest disasters seen by our generation. It is a natural calamity. I hope people get together in this time of crisis and lend a helping hand to all in need. I pray for the souls of the people who so violently departed.
Norman James, India

The situation in Surat has been very much under control and the city is coming back to normal.
Capt. RK Singh, Surat, India

I'm writing from Baroda, we have been to Ahmd. yesterday, the scene is very bad. Worst hit is the Maninagar area in Ahmd. God help everyone...what would be the state of Bhuj...lack of doctors, medical amenities...our heart goes to them ... and as citizens sitting so close to Bhuj, we really do not know what to do....everyone needs to pitch in....the whole global community needs to get together...I feel like just taking the next train to Bhuj. There are people waiting to be helped. Can the local authorities in Baroda take some initiative, please.
Vinita Pandya Shah, Baroda, India


Having recently lived through a similar earthquake we feel your pain

Melih Ucar, Izmir, Turkey
Our hearts go out to the Indian and Pakistani people who have been affected and hurt by this devastating earthquake. Turkey is sending rescue teams and equipment to help as many people as they can. Having recently lived through a similar earthquake we feel your pain. Do not lose hope we rescued many people even days after the quake. May God help all of the hurt people.
Melih Ucar, Izmir, Turkey

I was in the office when suddenly I felt everything moving under my feet. I thought I was tired due to sleepless night in the office. But then I realised that all this shaking was due to the earthquake. I rushed to the door and the moment I touched the wall it was shaking badly. So much so that the door was almost swinging to and fro. It all took only one minute but the time at the moment seemed to have stopped. And I felt as the most helpless person at the moment. Thank God, it's all over now and everything in Lahore is fine and life is going on normally. I pray for all those people whose sufferings can only be imagined. May God be with them.
Imran Riaz, Lahore, Pakistan

I am a resident of Ahmedabad, Gujarat. My place is in the Vastrapur area. Here many buildings have collapsed. One 10 storey building Shikar have collapsed, Manasi, a 10 storey building has also collapsed near here. Our Sagar Apartment also experienced severe jerks for almost 2 mins. We have not entered the building because of fear ... mostly volunteers are taking care ... there is no connection with Bhuj ... it's all looking like a burial ground ...
Gayatri, India

I was having a bath and felt that the bathroom was shaking so I ran out of my house in a towel shouting at all of my family members to stand in a corner having a right angle so if any part of the house breaks is the safest place to protect you from injury and death.
Nitin Modi, India

We have family in Samatra, Baladia and Kera, and my parents are in Bhuj. They are in a building called the golden palace, opposite the GEB, if anyone knows anything, please list it on here, or email us at araghvani@hotmail.com.
Vijay and Anita, UK

Can some one tell me of the level of destruction in Bhuj near the radio station, hospital road or jubilee area?
Jayshree, South Africa

If anyone has any information about how badly the villages surrounding Bhuj have been affected, in particular Madhapur, please could you let me know as soon as possible. (r1nah@hotmail.com)
Rina, London, UK

I am very sorry about what is happening in India, understanding the misery and sorrow the Indian people are living very well. As we lived through the same things in Turkey on 17 August 1999, when I look at the pictures of Indian people I feel just the same things we lived here in 17 August. God help you.
Zeynep Arik, Turkey

I am trying to contact my parents in the village of Kundanpur (near Kera, Bhuj) If any one has any news of this area please email me on hayna_halai@hotmail.com. In times like this living abroad we feel helpless as there is no clear news coming out of the Bhuj area. Is there something we can do as a community from Bhuj living in London?
Ravji Halai, UK


I request all the Indians overseas and in India to help build my Ahmedabad city and the state of Gujarat again

Nirav Shah, India
The experience has no words to explain. All I can say is that everyone in the city of Ahmedabad alive are the luckiest ones right now. I request all the Indians overseas and in India to help build my Ahmedabad city and the state of Gujarat again. I know we will do it. God bless us.
Nirav Shah, India

I personally experienced the earthquake, I am very much shocked. And I am very much worried about my relatives who are in Adypur and the interior of Saurastra.
Mehul, India

I am 14 years old. At that moment I was in the school, giving a paper. Suddenly i felt a hit - everyone was shocked and everyone was praying to God for the safety of everyone.
Madeeha, Marwah Mohammed Ali, Karachi, Pakistan

Our family of 9 members stays in a 91 year old house in Mumbai. Watching the anxiety of my family, I fail to comprehend the travails of all affected people in Gujarat as our house was shaking like a fig leaf.
Sanjay Khatri, Mumbai, India

I am a student of Bahria College, Karachi. And when the earthquake came here in Karachi I was walking in the room of the college. I didn't notice anything but when I entered in my computer lab I saw computers vibrating very highly. The computer table with the computer vibrated that I got shocked and for one moment I couldn't do anything. But here in Karachi, there were some people who were awakened but didn't know what had happened. And the people were in sleep awaked by that horrifying thing. God save us ...
Faiq Ali Khan, Pakistan

I am looking for news of the situation in Kheda and Vattal on behalf of a London Indian family. Please contact me at nigel.langford@btinternet.com.
Nigel Langford, London, UK

Sitting far and unable to do anything except to communicate with the telephone lines is not a nice feeling, especially when the near and the dear ones are in the affected areas. My parents and brother and sister-in-law who both are doctors live in Jamnagar. They didn't have major problems except the vessels and glasses going down ... the worst for us is that all our relatives are in Bhuj. My brother tried to contact on the same morning and the day itself but up till the late midnight nothing was possible for him. He with some other affected friends from Jamnagar is reaching or trying to reach Bhuj today i.e. on Saturday ... I am also waiting for the news from him as now he also is cut off from rest of us. My uncle and anties are in Bhuj called Kanu Zala, Mulshankar and Narottam Zala ...with the meagre chance which i presume, still if any body comes to know please contact and let me know about them or Bhuj as a whole.
Ketan Jansari, Germany

I live in Hyderabad, Sindh. I was sleeping in my room and got woken up by the shocks, I saw the light's shades and fans moving to and fro, it never happened in Hyderabad like this, at least not in my life or even my father's. There was a building collapsing nearly 200 meters away from hour home, in which 3 peoples died.
Sadiq Ali, Pakistan

My parents are in Ahmedabad. I got a message through one of my relatives that they are safe. My brother and sister both of whom also live in Mumbai are constantly in touch with each other and must have tried to get through our parents thousands of time over telephone, in vain. My heart goes out to all those whose near and dear ones are in Gujarat but are totally in the dark about their well being. I hope the telephone lines are made operational again at the earliest.
Vasant Kamat, Mumbai, India

Though I did not feel the tremor, I experienced the one in 1999. I can feel the fear it generates. I have all the sympathies for the people living in that region.
Iqbal Ali, Roorkee, India


We have seen since yesterday nearly 100 buildings have collapsed totally

Kamlesh Shah, India
We have seen since yesterday nearly 100 buildings have collapsed totally, the worst of it was one school building opposite Cadila factory, Ghodasar, Ahmedabad. Where nearly 50 children are been trapped under the debris. One of our colleagues Mr. Chirayu Pandya residing in Bopal has witnessed with his naked eyes, the moment of waves passing through his bungalow in open agriculture land, seeing moments of trees and earth rising up and coming back to its position as waves moved faster.
Kamlesh Shah, India

27-01-2001 / 1.45 pm IST ... I have no courage to describe what is happening here in Ahmedabad. The death toll is rising higher and higher. It's difficult to establish telephone connections.
Ramnik Mistry, Odhav, Ahmedabad, India

It was round about 9 in the morning when quake was in action. I was sleeping with my kid on the bed suddenly my bed was starting to move. Immediately I woke up and took my son in my hand and shouted to my wife and mom to come out from the house. When we reached outside of our flat I saw that my flat was moving. It was horrible.
Sanjay, Ahmedabad, India

I live in ahmedabad, which has been quite badly affected. Lots of buildings have come down, and there is panic all around. The Govt machinery was caught totally unawares and was not prepared for a disaster of this magnitude. Voluntary organisations like RSS, Bajrang Dal, Army personnel and jawans of Rapid Action Force are doing a wonderful job. There is panic all around on account of anticipated after shocks. The situation is quite bad in Saurashtra and Kutch, especially Bhuj. Rumours are flying thick and fast about the actual numbers of casualties which could run into tens of thousands.
Sanjeev Sharma, India

The morning of 26th, I hardly imagined what I was to face. I was studying for my exams the next day and suddenly when my table started rocking, I was scared and I simply ran out of my 10 storeyed apt house (I stay on the second floor) with my mother and my neighbour's children. I hardly was able to balance when I was running down holding two people but anyhow, I took the entire matter casually and I felt people were overreacting but once I started watching the news channels and I went to see the "Mansi complex" in Vastrapur which had been reduced to rubble and when i heard about the death of my close friend's cousin, I was shocked. It was then that I thanked god for giving me the gift of life.
Namrata Rai, Ahmedabad/India

I am right now in new jersey, for my interviews in medical schools in the USA for the last two months and I have my wife with 2 daughters, one 6 yrs and another 4 months old, in India. Today in the early morning at about 7 am my brother shouted and woke me up and said something devastating may be an earthquake in our state and we show Ahmedabad to be worst affected in the news. It was extremely anxious morning for me as my wife and kids were in a flat in a 3 storey building at Ahmedabad. I was not able to get any phone lines despite trying for 4-5 hours, but got information indirectly from one of my relatives at Bombay who told me they are ok and no injury or harm has occurred to them, but till I talk to them I couldn't stop calling them and at 1 pm I got the call from my wife who told me that they have survived. She and my daughter show collapsing building just as they came out of the flat. It was very tense and depressing to see people trapped in debris on TV here.
Dhananjay, New Jersey, US

If any body knows about Ahmedabad, Memnagar area please let me know. My e-mail: jaygurudev_2000@usa.net
Mehul Solanki, India/Pune

I am currently in Delhi and will be travelling to Gujarat soon to help in any which way that I can, I did read about many people - in India and abroad - trying to get in touch with their relatives and friends and are finding it difficult getting through. Get in touch with me and I will try my best to help in any way possible. Write to me at bobby_singh9@hotmail.com. Sadly the whole govt. rescue system has failed. It is up to us now to help each other as much possible.
Bobby Singh, India

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See also:

22 Feb 00 | South Asia
Oxfam attacks Indian disaster policy
26 Jan 01 | World
Deadly history of earthquakes


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