A moderate earthquake measuring 5.6 on the Richter scale on Wednesday night jolted Delhi, National Capital Region, Chennai and parts of eastern and northern India including West Bengal, Odisha and Jharkhand, but there were no immediate reports of casualties or damage to properties.
The quake struck 60 kms east of Paradip at a depth of 10 kms at 9.52 pm, said L S Rathore, Director General, India Meterological Department.
Residents in some places of Odisha and Tamil Nadu moved out of their houses as soon as the quake struck and a few buildings developed cracks in Bhubaneshwar.
"The epicentre of the earthquake was in the Bay of Bengal with its coordinates being 18.1 degree north and 87.8 degree east, measuring 5.6 on the Richter scale," said Ministry of Earth Science Secretary Shailesh Nayak.
The tremor was felt for a few seconds in many areas of Odisha, including state capital Bhubaneshwar but it was enough to trigger panic among people who immediately moved out of buildings.
Residents of Punama Gate locality in Old Town area of Bhuaneshwar said cracks had appeared on the walls of some buildings and kitchen utensils fell off the racks.
A report from Cuttack said electricity supply was snapped for about 15 minutes in some areas of the city after the tremor.
Panic gripped several parts of Odisha's Kendrapara district where residents felt the tremors for about 10 seconds.
"We were in the house and felt the jolts. Doors, windows and cots in the house all shook. We were terrified," said Sashmita, a homemaker.
"No casualty or loss of property was reported from any part of the state so far. There is no need to panic," Odisha's Joint Special Relief Commissioner, Prabhat Mohapatra said.
A Chennai report said tremors were felt in parts of Nungambakkam, Porur and Triplicane where people rushed out of their homes.
Residents in the villages of Paradip and Jagasinghpur districts of Odisha also experienced the tremors and people along the coastal areas of both the districts were apprehensive of a tsunami.
Tremors were also felt in Kolkata and adjoining districts across South Bengal.
Bihar state MeT department director A Sen said the quake was felt in Patna, Gaya, Buxar and some others parts of the state but there was no report of any damage.
In Odisha, the tremors were felt in the districts of Balasore, Keonjhar, Cuttack, Dhenkanal, Kandhamal, Nabarangpur, Rourkela, Puri, Bhadrak and Jajpur, reports said.
The quake was also felt across most places in Jharkhand.
Officials at the regional seismological centre in Shillong said the quake was moderate in nature and was not expected to generate a tsunami.
Mild tremors were also felt in several cities of Chhattisgarh, including the capital Raipur, tonight.
"Mild tremors were felt in Raipur, Bilaspur, Jashpur, Surajpur and other districts around 10 pm," Umesh Kumar, a meteorologist at the weather department in Bilaspur, said.
No loss of human life or damage to property has been reported till now, Kumar added.
Tremors were felt in the coastal Andhra Pradesh districts following an earthquake in the Bay of Bengal tonight, but there were no reports of casualties or damage.
According to Cyclone Warning Centre in Vishakhapatanam, an earthquake measuring 5.8 on the Richter scale occurred in the Bay of Bengal, 540 km north-east of Visakhapatnam, at 9.50 pm.
Due to the quake, mild tremors were experienced in the coastal areas of Visakhaptnam, Srikakulam, Viziagangarm and East Godavari districts, it said.
However, there were no reports of any loss of life or property, the centre said.
People in Visakhapatnam city came out of their homes in panic.
Tremors were felt for ten seconds in Kotananduru, Tuni, Pushakhar Ghat and Humupeta, among other areas, of East Godavari district. People living in apartments came out on the streets in panic, an official said in Rajahmundry.
East Godavari District Joint Collector Muthyala Raju told PTI, "We have alerted the district administration, including revenue officials, as precautionary measure to prevent any human loss or damage to property."