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Death toll crosses 1,900 in Nepal earthquake; rescue efforts on

India has sent four aircraft with National Disaster Response Force teams to oversee rescue and relief ops

Press Trust of India  |  Kathmandu 

Volunteers work to remove debris at the historic Dharahara tower, a city landmark, after an earthquake in Kathmandu, Nepal

The death toll in Nepal from the devastating earthquake mounted to 1,911 today as rescue efforts intensified, with international teams including from India sifting through tonnes of rubble in search of survivors in the Himalayan nation's worst temblor in over 80 years.

Fresh aftershocks jolted Nepal and adjoining areas, as the country declared a state of emergency in the wake of the disaster caused by a powerful 7.9-magnitude earthquake and over a dozen aftershocks that hit the country yesterday.

The earthquake and the aftershocks left behind a trail of death and destruction, flattening houses and buildings, including the iconic Dharhara tower and the landmark Darbar Square in the heart of the capital, trapping scores of people.

Thousands of people spent last night in the open in chilly weather, anticipating more aftershocks.

The death toll touched 1,911 while the number of injured reached 4,627 till this morning, according to the Home Ministry.

Around 1,000 people are reported killed in the Kathmandu Valley alone. Officials fear the death toll could rise as desperate search for survivors continued.

Dozens of bodies have been taken to hospitals here, many of which are struggling to cope with the number of injured.

As many as 17 Mount Everest climbers, including foreigners, were reportedly killed in an avalanche triggered by the earthquake, the worst in over 80 years of Nepal's recorded history.

However, the Home Ministry put the death toll due to the avalanche at 10.

According to reports, the route to the base camp has been destroyed and the Indian Air Force choppers were trying to rescue the survivors, around 100 in number who were said to be safe.

Two Indians, including the daughter of an Indian embassy employee, were among those killed in the powerful earthquake, an Indian embassy official said.

Four fresh aftershocks jolted Nepal today, measuring up to 6 on the Richter scale, including one that was reported to hit 41 km west-northwest of Kirtipur.

However, there was no immediate report of casualty following today's tremors.

First Published: Sun, April 26 2015. 08:55 IST
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