At least 20 people died and more than 300 were injured after an earthquake of magnitude 5.9 on the Richter scale struck Balochistan province of Pakistan in the early hours of Thursday, the Dawn reported, citing the Provincial Disaster Management Authority.

Naseer Nasar, the chief of the disaster management body, said that the toll may rise, AFP reported.

The earthquake originated in Harnai district of Balochistan province, according to independent organisation European-Mediterranean Seismological Centre. Tremors were felt in the cities of Quetta, Sibbi, Pishin, Muslim Bagh, Ziarat, Qila Abdullah, Sanjavi, Zhob and Chaman.

The injured persons have been admitted to District Headquarters Hospital in Harnai.

There were at least six children among the deceased, Deputy Commissioner of Harnai district Sohail Anwar Hashmi told the Dawn.

Balochistan Chief Minister Jam Kamal Khan Alyani has assured assistance to the residents. “Blood, ambulances, emergency assistance, heli[copters] and rest all things are placed...All departments are working on it,” the minister said in a tweet.

Prime Minister Imran Khan ordered the authorities to provide immediate assistance to the victims of the earthquake and assess the damage so that a compensation could be chalked out.

Provincial Disaster Management Authority Director General Naseer Ahmed Nasir said that a landslide had occurred in the mountainous region of Harani, Geo News reported. It had damaged homes and government buildings within the 15 kilometre radius of Harani.

There were reports of 15 coal miners being trapped in a mine outside Harani, Suhail Anwar Hashmi, a senior provincial government official in Harnai told AFP.

Home Minister Mir Ziaullah Langove said that the earthquake had affected five to six districts.

The quake disrupted electricity supply in several areas, including in hospitals, according to AFP.

“Before daybreak, we were operating without electricity with the help of torches and mobile flashlights,” Zahoor Tarin, a senior official at a government-run hospital in Harnai, told the news agency.