Do ancient eastern sciences hold the key to earthquake prediction on the basis of unusual cloud patterns?

It may seem likely as the ancient theory of 'earthquake clouds', which finds mention in the 6th century astronomermathematician Varahamihira's Brihat Samahita, is also the subject of research at the Earthquake Prediction Centre, California, and under scrutiny in Pune.

According to US-based quake researcher Zhonghao Shou, who has been using satellite imagery to predict quakes on the basis of peculiar cloud formations, ancient Chinese and Italians studied special clouds which were indicative of impending earthquakes.

A website on earthquake clouds and short term prediction maintained by him — 'Earthquake clouds and short term prediction' homepage (, states that he had predicted "a China or Neighbour EQ Cloud" more than 24 hours before the Pakistan quake happened.

Closer home in Pune, Vedic scholar S.N. Bhavsar has been pleading for wider, multi-disciplinary scientific investigation into chapter 32 of the Brihat Samahita, which correlates earthquakes with unusual cloud formations, underground and undersea activity, abnormal behaviour of animals and cosmic and planetary influences.

According to him, Varahamihira speaks of unusual cloud formations a week before the occurrence of a quake.

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