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Pakistan quake: Dr Singh offers condolences

Source: PTI
October 30, 2008 01:07 IST
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Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on Wednesday offered condolences to the families of people killed in the earthquake that struck Pakistan's Balochistan province, claiming over 170 people and leaving 15,000 homeless.

In a letter to his Pakistani counterpart Syed Yousuf Raza Gilani, Dr Singh expressed "deep grief" over the widespread loss of life and property.

"On behalf of the people of India, I express our sincere condolences to the families of those who have perished in this natural calamity," he said.

He also said that the government of India stands ready to offer all possible assistance required by Pakistan to provide relief to the people affected by the tragedy, the prime minister's media office said.

Over 170 people were killed and hundreds injured when a strong earthquake shook Pakistan's impoverished south-western Balochistan early on Wednesday, destroying hundreds of mud houses that left 15,000 homeless.

At least eight villages in Ziarat and Pishin areas of Balochistan province were almost razed to rubble by the quake, according to first rescue workers who reached there.

Two tremors hit parts of Balochistan, the country's most backward province, before dawn when people were asleep.

The devastation was wrought by the second quake, which had a magnitude of 6.5.

The second quake, which had its epicentre 60 km north-east of Balochistan's capital Quetta, struck at 5.10 am. The first quake, which hit at 4.33 am, had a magnitude of 5.

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