A potential disaster
A new study has revealed that a potentially massive earthquake may be building under the Bangladesh territory which can turn many areas in eastern India into “ruins”. Scientists have gathered evidence of increasing strain on the two tectonic plates that underlie the world’s largest river delta. The magnitude of impact could be so huge that it can affect the lives of at least 140 million people dwelling in a region that measures 62,000 square km.
Subduction zone inland vs sea
According to scientists, the major threat lies in the subduction zone, where one section of earth’s crust, or a tectonic plate, is slowly thrusting under another. This is the most earthquake prone zone. The Tsunami in 2004 and the Tohoku quake in 2011 had all been in the subduction zone. All such zones were till now known to be under the ocean, but the danger multiplies this time as the zone now appears to be entirely under the land. Scientists are of the opinion that the strain has been developing since the last 400 years. It is estimated that the earthquake magnitude can be around 9 on the Richter scale.
Bangladesh and a large area of Eastern India lie in a zone vulnerable to moderate earthquakes due to the vast delta regions of the Ganges and Brahmaputra rivers. Mud has been accumulated in some 19 km deep in this region can shake “like gelatin, and liquefy in many places, sucking in buildings, roads and people,” said co-author Syed Humayun Akhter, a geologist at Dhaka University, in a statement. However, the scientists have not been able to speculate when will the earthquake occur. But they fear that it may cause extensive demolition up to Myanmar.
As practiced by various nations who are prone to disaster, India, Bangladesh and Myanmar should form a joint team to research the potential impacts and the means by which the disaster can be faced by the people of the region.