The Chamoli earthquake of 29 March 1999 in northern India is yet another important event from the viewpoint of Himalayan seismotectonics and seismic resistance of non-engineered constructions.
The earthquake occurred in a part of the Central Himalaya, which is highly prone to earthquakes and has been placed in the highest seismic zone (zone V) of India. There has been a bitter controversy during the recent years regarding the seismic safety of a 260-m-high rock-fill dam under construction at Tehri, about 80 km west of the epicenter. Fortunately, there are no major cities in the meizoseismal region and the population density is the second lowest in the state. The earthquake caused death of about 100 persons and injured hundreds more. Maximum MSK intensity was up to VIII at a few locations.