New Delhi: Nepalese officials have warned that death toll in Saturday’s earthquake in Nepal could hit 10,000.
Officials said that scores of American families are among the thousands searching for those still unaccounted.
The US Geological Survey’s PAGER model too has said that there are 52 per cent chances of more than 10,000 deaths.
It has also projected that the total economic losses may exceed the GDP of the Himalayan nation.
Nepal’s economy is strongly tourism-dependent and the latest destruction may depress the economy for years.
The death toll from the earthquake rose to 3,218 on Monday, two days after 7.9 magnitde quake rocked the South Asian country.
Aid workers also warned that the situation could be far worse near the epicenter. The US Geological Survey said the quake was centered near Lamjung, about 80 kilometers (50 miles) northwest of Kathmandu.
The earthquake was the worst to hit Nepal in more than 80 years. It destroyed swaths of the oldest neighborhoods of Kathmandu and was strong enough to be felt all across parts of India, Bangladesh, Tibet and Pakistan.