The recent earthquake in various areas of Balochistan has caused enormous devastation and taken more than 200 precious lives. The cause of huge earthquakes and shocks is generally movement of the continent-sized tectonic plates underneath the earth's crust. These movements are either sideways (horizontal) or upside-down (vertical). The region where these plates meet is called a faultline. Unfortunately Pakistan is located on an area having a lot of active faultlines, which run from Himalayas to Karachi. Therefore all of our land is at high risk of earthquakes ranging in intensity from mild to catastrophic. The movement of tectonic plates becomes more probable when there is a new moon or a full moon, because during this phase, the moon and the sun are almost aligned and hence put huge gravitational stress on earth's crust. It is quite noticeable that the most recent earthquake in Balochistan has taken place on 29th of Shawal when a new moon had adorned the sky. It appears that the moon is indirectly responsible for this disaster. Our government and our nation must realize and understand that we are living on an active geologic land and, therefore, need to act accordingly in dealing with this sort of calamities. Our houses and buildings ought to be quake-proof and our people must be informed and trained about emergency measures in order to combat this sort of cataclysms in future. -MUBASHER JAMIL, Rawalpindi, via e-mail, October 30.