Baku. 25 April. REPORT.AZ/ A powerful, 7.9-magnitude earthquake shook Nepal's capital and the densely populated Kathmandu Valley before noon Saturday, collapsing houses, leveling centuries-old temples and cutting open roads in the worst tremor in the Himalayan nation in over 80 years, Report informs citing foreign media.
Several buildings collapsed in the center of the capital, the ancient Old Kathmandu, including centuries-old temples and towers, said resident Prachanda Sual. Among them was the Dharahara Tower, one of Kathmandu's landmarks built by Nepal's royal rulers in the 1800s and a UNESCO-recognized historical monument. It was reduced to rubble and there were reports of people trapped underneath.
Dozens of people with injuries were being brought to the main hospital in central Kathmandu. There was no immediate estimate on fatalities. China's state broadcaster said one Chinese tourist was killed in Nepal at the Nepal-China border.
According to the information, the earthquake also shook several cities across northern India, and was felt as far away as Lahore in Pakistan. The epicenter was 80 kilometers (49 mile) northwest of Kathmandu.
Old Kathmandu city is a warren of tightly packed, narrow lanes with poorly constructed homes piled on top of each other.
Sual said he saw people running through the streets in panic. Ambulance sirens blared and government helicopters hovered overhead.
National radio warned people to stay outdoors and maintain calm because more aftershocks were feared. A 6.6-magnitude aftershock hit about an hour after the initial quake.
According to the last information given by Russian media, more than 150 people died.