“It is not possible to describe the state of the city when the battalion first saw it. It was razed to the ground. Corpses were lying everywhere in the hot sun and every available vehicle in Quetta was being used for the transportation of injured … Companies were given areas in which to clear the dead and injured. Battalion Headquarters were established at the Residency. Hardly had we commenced our work than we were called upon to supply a party of fifty men, which were later increased to a hundred, to dig graves in the cemetery.”

–A Regimental Journal for the 1st Battalion of the Queen’s Royal Regiment based in Quetta – November 1935

The 1935 Quetta earthquake has been recorded to be the deadliest earthquake in Pakistan’s history until the 2005 earthquake. The magnitude of this earthquake was 7.7Mw and hit the Balochistan province of Pakistan. It killed between 30,000 and 60,000 people, with 10,000 survivors and 4,000 injured. The quake was centred 4.0 kilometres south-west of Ali Jaan, Balochistan, British India. Quetta, along with its neighbouring towns, is located in the most active seismic region of Pakistan, right on top of the Chaman and Chiltan faults. The movement on the Chaman Fault had resulted in an earthquake early in the morning on May 31, 1935 and was estimated to strike between the hours of 2:33 am and 3:40 am. It lasted for a maximum three minutes followed by continuous aftershocks. Infrastructure of the city along with the Railway and the Royal Air Force garrison suffered serious damage. The tremors were felt as far as Agra, now in India. The largest aftershock occurred on July 2,1935 with a magnitude of 5.8Mw. It did not lead to any casualties in Quetta, but the towns of Mastung, Maguchar and Kalat were seriously damaged.