Pakistan’s National Seismic Monitoring Director Director Zahid Rafi has rejected the possibility of a Turkey-like earthquake in Pakistan. A social media post had predicted a massive earthquake in India and Pakistan region in the next few days.
The post made rounds on social media and even circulated in Whatsapp groups too. The post triggered fear and apprehensions among the public as calls were made urging the government to make prior preparations to deal with the natural catastrophe.
The rumors gained momentum when Solar System Geometry Survey (SSGEOS) predicted seismic activity in India and Pakistan and some other parts of South Asia influenced by the lunar activity and the location and geometry of planets, and other celestial objects.
Turkish Earthquake (6 Feb 2023) and Seismic Profile of Pakistan #earthquakes #Turkey #TurkeySyriaEarthquake pic.twitter.com/S4lRn0bGVd
— Pak Met Department محکمہ موسمیات (@pmdgov) February 8, 2023
“Potential for stronger seismic activity in or near the purple band 1-6 days. This is an estimate. Other regions are not excluded,” the tweet read.
Read more: Death toll exceeds 20,000 in quake hit Turkey and Syria
Social media users are quoting the predictions of viral Dutch Seismologist Frank Hoogerbeets who had accurately predicted the Turkey-Syria earthquake three days before it struck.
Potential for stronger seismic activity in or near the purple band 1-6 days. This is an estimate. Other regions are not excluded. pic.twitter.com/YC7NJtEdbO
— SSGEOS (@ssgeos) January 29, 2023
Commenting on these rumors, Rafi said earthquakes are a natural phenomenon. “If the earthquake was known in advance, there would not have been so much loss of life and property in Turkey,” the NSMC chief said.
He added that mild tremors are nothing new in Pakistan. “Mild quakes occur in Pakistan and will continue to happen.” Adding that there is no similarity between the fault lines between Turkey and Pakistan.
Pakistan’s Meteorological Department also addressed the concerns of people in a detailed statement.
The statement said, “The PMD was running its own seismic monitoring network comprising 30 remote monitoring stations and recording earthquakes occurring within and surrounding areas every day. These quakes are of small to medium range magnitudes,” while reiterating that “earthquake is a purely natural phenomenon”.
The PMD also asserted that connecting the devastating Turkish earthquake to Pakistan was not scientifically correct and said: “The possibility of the occurrence of a major earthquake in Pakistan and surrounding countries is always there but when and where or the timeline of happening is beyond the reach of existing technology.”
“Seismic hazard assessment is an effort by earth scientists to quantify seismic hazard and its associated uncertainty in time and space and to provide seismic hazard estimates for seismic risk assessment and other applications but nothing concerned with the prediction of earthquakes,” said PMD.