Tsunami is a Japanese Word meaning very tall tidal or harbor waves. The tsunami that took place around 6.30 a.m. on 26th December, 2006 was caused by a massive under water earthquake near Sumatra in Indonesia.
The earthquake was measured at 8.9 on the Richter scale and it was one of the most severe quakes to have struck the earth in the last forty years. It jolted the ocean floor tremendously. As a result, a huge mass of rising water rushed at a tremendous speed destroying and devastating whatever came in its way.
The Tsunami caused a wide spread damage and destruction to life and property in coastal areas of Indonesia, Malaysia, Maldives,Thailand, Srilanka, India and few other countries of South-East Asia and Coastal Africa.
A chain of waves of 30 to 40 feet height struck and flattened large areas of coastal Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, Kerala and Andaman and Nicobar islands. The Tsunami is reported to have killed a staggering number of 1,50,000 people in the affected areas. Thousands of people were wounded, washed away and rendered homeless. Property worth crores of rupees was destroyed. Rescue and relief works were taken up on a war footing in the affected areas. Relief materials were sent from home and abroad.