The death toll could climb in coming days because communications were down in much of the rugged Hindu Kush mountain range where the quake was centred.


               
In one of the worst incidents, at least 12 girls were killed in a stampede to flee their school building in the northeastern Afghan province of Takhar, just west of Badakhshan province where the tremor's epicentre was located.

Also Read: Quake in South Asia: PM Modi offers help to Afghanistan, Pakistan
               
"They fell under the feet of other students," said Abdul Razaq Zinda, provincial head of the Afghan National Disaster Management Agency, who reported heavy damage in Takhar.

Shockwaves were felt in northern India and in Pakistan, where hundreds of people ran out of buildings as the ground rolled beneath them.
               
"We were very scared ... We saw people leaving buildings, and we were remembering our God," Pakistani journalist Zubair Khan said by telephone from the Swat Valley northwest of the capital, Islamabad.

Also Read: Two army men injured in J&K as earthquake jolts North India

The quake was 213 km deep and centred 254 km northeast of Kabul in Badakhshan province. The U.S. Geological Survey initially measured the magnitude at 7.7, then revised it down to 7.5.
               
Just over a decade ago, a 7.6 magnitude quake in another part of northern Pakistan killed about 75,000 people.  
               
In Afghanistan, a total of 33 were reported dead on Monday.  In addition to the 12 schoolgirls in Takhar, seven people died in the eastern province of Nangarhar, two in Nuristan province in the northeast, three in eastern Kunar province and nine in Badakhshan, officials said.

 

See in pics: Earthquake jolts Afghanistan, India and Pakistan


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