Nepal Earthquake: Devastation Claims Lives and Forces Thousands to Sleep Outdoors

Massive Earthquake in Jajarkot, Nepal Claims Over 150 Lives

Houses collapsed after an earthquake struck the Jajarkot district in northwestern Nepal on November 5, 2023, resulting in a death toll of more than 150 and leaving several others injured. The powerful earthquake caused widespread devastation, with most homes in the affected villages either collapsing or suffering severe damage. Even the few concrete houses in towns were not spared from the destruction.

Villagers Forced to Sleep Outdoors in Freezing Cold

Following the earthquake, thousands of villagers in the mountainous region of northwestern Nepal were left with no choice but to sleep outdoors on Saturday night, braving the bitter cold. The level of destruction in the Jajarkot district left most homes uninhabitable, rendering the villagers homeless. In a desperate attempt to find shelter, people resorted to using whatever materials they could find, such as plastic sheets and old clothes, to keep warm.

Among the worst-hit villages was Chiuri, where most houses collapsed under the force of the earthquake. The residents of Chiuri village were left devastated as they struggled to comprehend the extent of the damage. The local resident, Lal Bahadur Bika, highlighted the grim reality as he pointed to 13 bodies wrapped in white cloth, awaiting cremation on Sunday morning. The village, like many others, was now faced with the heartbreaking task of bidding farewell to their loved ones.

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With their homes reduced to rubble, the villagers faced additional challenges in recovering their belongings. Most people were unable to retrieve any items from under the debris. The tragedy unfolded as the earthquake caused the houses, primarily made from stacked rocks and logs, to crumble, burying the inhabitants under tons of debris.

Rescue and Aid Operations Hampered by Inaccessible Mountainous Terrain

In the wake of the disaster, rescuers fought against the clock to provide aid and support to the affected communities. However, their efforts were impeded by the rugged and remote mountainous terrain, which made it difficult to reach many villages by vehicle. The earthquake-triggered landslides further compounded the problem by blocking the roads.

Soldiers were seen tirelessly working to clear the blocked roads, striving to create access to the isolated villages. The government, under the guidance of Deputy Prime Minister Narayan Kaji Shrestha, is working diligently to distribute aid to the affected areas. Tents, food, and medicine have been flown in to assist the thousands who have been suddenly displaced and left homeless.

Survivors Recount Tales of Horror

Survivors of the devastating earthquake shared their harrowing experiences as they began to recover from their injuries. Bimal Kumar Karki, who was among the first to be brought to the regional hospital, described the horrifying moment when his entire house collapsed while he was asleep. Half of his body was buried in the debris as he desperately tried to escape.

Another injured man, Tika Ram Rana, recounted a similar ordeal. He, too, was fast asleep when the earthquake struck, causing his house to cave in. Rana, with his head wrapped in a white bandage, expressed the overwhelming destruction that surrounded him, with countless houses collapsing and numerous people buried under the rubble.

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As rescue efforts continued, local television stations broadcasted footage of troops recovering bodies and aiding in the rescue of survivors. The magnitude of the catastrophe became evident as the injured were dug out from beneath the wreckage, their lives hanging in the balance.

In Summary

The powerful earthquake in the Jajarkot district of northwest Nepal claimed the lives of over 150 people and caused extensive damage to homes and infrastructure. Villagers faced the harsh reality of homelessness as most houses either collapsed or suffered severe damage. The remoteness of the affected areas and landslides obstructed rescue and aid operations, hampering the efforts to provide relief swiftly. Survivors shared their traumatic experiences, highlighting the horror and devastation caused by the earthquake. The road to recovery will be long and arduous for the affected communities as they grapple with the aftermath of this tragic event.



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