By Priyanka Saurabh
On one hand, while the whole world is facing an epidemic like the Coronavirus, on the other hand, nature is also angry. In the different parts of the world, you are feeling the shock of celestial lightning, floods, arson, oil spills, and earthquakes that you may stop. In the race for indiscriminate development, we gave up on appreciating nature, or instead of planning to deal with such natural phenomena, we put strength in finding life on other planets that the ground under our feet slipped, people in India also have such incidents.
The land of Rohtak in Haryana adjoining Delhi has been shaking due to earthquakes from the last several days, the land of Delhi-NCR has shaken more than 15 times in the last three months. At the same time, tremors of the earthquake are being felt continuously in Haryana. People here are troubled by these repeated shocks inside the houses, so the fear of Corona outside is neither letting them live nor letting them die. Most cities in North India are facing severe and moderate-intensity seismic hazards.
This is due to the Indo-Australian tectonic plate colliding with the Eurasian plate and the fault line is activated. The recent earthquake tremors in North India are the result of this Delhi-Haridwar verge, Mahendra Garh-Dehradun fault, Moradabad fault, Sohna fault, Great Boundary fault, and two others in Delhi and Haryana areas. Sargodha verges, Yamuna and Yamuna are the crack lines of the Ganges river, out of which Mahendragarh-Dehradun has come into active mode, which is shaking the whole of North India today.
We nowadays get a little information before a big earthquake in an area. Although it cannot be predicted that no major earthquake will occur after a low-intensity seismic tremor, the possibility of a strong earthquake can never be ruled out. India is classified into four ‘seismic zones’ (II, III, IV, and V) based on earthquake and tectonic arrangement. Seismic zones V and IV are prone to major earthquakes that may affect the entire Himalayas and the Delhi-NCR region.
Earthquake tremors in Rohtak and adjoining areas have come as the Mahendergarh-Dehradun Fault Line is activated, affecting it in the areas of Delhi-Haridwar Ridge Fault Line and Delhi-Sargoda Fault Line of North India. Due to the activation in the Mathura Fault Line, there have been tremors up to Greater Noida, Faridabad. The areas of Greater Noida, Faridabad and Delhi are affected by the Mathura fault line. The Gurugram region is greatly affected by the Sohna fault line. As it is, the Mahendragarh-Dehradun fault line passes just below the Rohtak city of Haryana, adjacent to Delhi, due to which the slight stir within the ground also takes the form of an earthquake and the earth shakes there. There is a crack in the tectonic plates under the earth and when there is a stir in these cracks, the surrounding area shakes.
The 12 districts of Haryana are very susceptible to earthquakes. The area at which the earthquake hit the village of Chuliana in Rohtak is part of Mahendragarh-Dehradun Fault. The Mahendragarh-Dehradun fault line runs from Mahendragarh in Haryana covering Jhajjar, Rohtak, Sonipat, Panipat under the Himalayas in Dehradun, Uttarakhand and being connected to the Himalayas, there is a stir in this fault. Small earthquakes keep coming on this fault line, which sometimes makes us feel more, according to the study of geologists, Mahendragarh-Dohradun fault is about one kilometer deep from the ground surface.
The Chuliana area is located in the same fault area which is highly susceptible to earthquakes. Delhi-NCR has been identified as the second highest seismic hazard zone (Zone IV). The districts falling in zone four are considered sensitive. Zone-three is the least affected area, while zone-two has very little chance of an earthquake. A series of recent earthquake tremors in the National Capital Territory of Delhi is not uncommon in Zone-4. Along with Rohtak, people from nearby areas should also be prepared to bear the brunt of the earthquake in the future.
By the way, earthquake is not generally predictable. Yes, we know that seismic zones V and IV of India are prone to major earthquakes that can shake the entire Himalayas and Delhi-NCR region. The area of Rohtak around Delhi is located in an area with high damage risk from earthquakes. Since 15 May 2020, the National Center for Seismology has recorded several small earthquakes ranging from 1.8 to 4.5 on the Richter scale, including Faridabad, Rohtak, and New Delhi.
Scientists have warned that the national capital may witness a massive earthquake in the foothills of the Himalayas. In a densely populated city like Delhi, the impact of such an earthquake can be “huge loss”. Therefore, the only way to reduce the loss of life and property over time is effective preparedness against earthquakes. In this case, better cooperation with countries like Japan can be established. Also, we need to strictly implement the seismic standards required in urban planning and construction of buildings. Remember that there is a need to increase people’s participation, cooperation, and awareness for managing the seismic disaster.
Scientists have also urged the Central and Delhi governments to take preventive measures and create awareness. At the same time, we will have to develop synthetic articular radar technology for the future, whose remote sensing technology can be used to assess the occurrence and scale of earthquakes. From now onwards, there should be an agitational initiative to make houses, buildings, bridges anti-earthquake. Along with this, people should adopt these techniques in sensitive areas to make their homes safe and earthquake resistant. Illustration: Aditya Suresh and Anjali Subhash.
(Priyanka Saurabh is independent journalist, columnist, research scholar in political science and poetess. She can be reached at email@example.com)