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First Person: Nothing could match scale of Nepal quake

The doctor, who was in a team of 50 doctors visiting Nepal for a conference said that the Nepal quake was the biggest he had witnessed.

Pune |
Updated: April 30, 2015 12:39:33 am
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By: Alifiya Khan

It was the generator-like whirring sound that first indicated to Latur-based paediatrician Dr Datta Gojamgunde that something was amiss. The 43-year old doctor, who was in a team of 50 doctors visiting Nepal for a conference when tremors measuring 7.9 on Richter scale hit the country, said the calamity reminded him of the 1993 Latur earthquake.

The doctor, however, added that the Nepal quake was the biggest he had witnessed. “The tremors I felt in Latur had trained me to recognise an earthquake but nothing could match the scale of the Nepal quake. On that day, I first heard the generator-like sound and later saw glasses, chandeliers and furniture moving. Soon, we were running out of the hotel and shouts of ‘earthquake, earthquake’ could be heard,” recalled the doctor.

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With a major part of the old luxury hotel destroyed, the doctor said he had to spent the night on the streets of Kathmandu.

“Luckily, we had taken our passports and money before leaving the hotel, since the rooms were completely blocked or destroyed later,” he said.

Dr Gojamgunde landed in New Delhi on Monday night. He said the Kathmandu airport was packed to capacity but it was being managed very well, especially by Indian forces.

“It is so packed that we were sitting on a part of the runway in an area from where flights were not taking off or landing. But the disaster management teams, especially Indian teams, are doing their best in the circumstances. We got adequate food, water and whatever they could provide,” the doctor added.

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