The Department of Disaster Management in Arunachal Pradesh has issued a statement, cautioning citizens against an unauthenticated warning regarding an impending earthquake that is being circulated on social media. The release clarifies that the government has not authenticated any such warnings.
The fake news circulating on social media claims that an earthquake measuring 31 seconds will strike the state on February 26 at 12 noon, which has led to panic among the public. The statement issued by the Department of Disaster Management has requested the citizens not to fall prey to such rumors and to avoid panicking.
A 3.8 magnitude earthquake had struck the western part of Arunachal Pradesh on February 19, as per a report by the National Center for Seismology. The earthquake was recorded at 12.12 pm and had its epicenter near the Bhutan border in West Kameng, at a depth of 10 km.
The northeastern region of India is located in the high seismic zone, which makes earthquakes a frequent occurrence.
Earlier a message claiming that a powerful 7.2 magnitude earthquake with its epicenter at Manipur's capital city Imphal will hit Nagaland state on February 26 has been doing the rounds on social media, creating panic among people.
The message that comes in a map under the headline "2023 India Earthquake" also claimed that the impending earthquake will happen at 12.09 pm on February 26 and last for 31 seconds. However, the claim is unfounded with no scientific proof that Manipur and Nagaland will be hit by a tremor.
Meanwhile, the Nagaland State Disaster Management Authority (NSDMA) has clarified by informing the public that the warning being circulated on social media is not from a government authenticated or authorised agency.
It added that the warning about an impending earthquake has no relation to any of the authorised nodal agency monitoring seismic activity in the country, such as National Centre for Seismology, Ministry of Earth Sciences, government of India.
The NSDMA also advised the public not to panic but be aware and continue to adhere to various safety measures it issues from time to time concerning earthquakes as Nagaland and other north-eastern states including Manipur lies in the Seismic Zone-V and in a tectonic plate boundary which is most vulnerable to earthquakes.
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