Bright fireballs lit up the sky in many parts of Kerala on Friday night, triggering panic among residents.
Experts say they may be part of a falling meteor or a rocket that may have hit the ground. The fireballs left behind an orange trail as they descended and triggered loud noises in some areas.
Earlier during the week, a similar incident was reported from Arizona in United States which was later confirmed by Nasa as a junk body part from a Chinese rocket.
The strange phenomenon occurred around 10.30 pm and lasted for a few seconds.
Soon, social media was abuzz as panicked people started posting images and several police stations and newspaper offices received late night calls. “I thought it was day in the middle of the night. It lasted for less than a minute,” a resident of Kochi naval yard said after witnessing the spectacle.
State revenue minister Adoor Prakash has asked experts to investigate the occurrence and asked people to not create unnecessary panic.
In Kochi, some people said they felt mild tremors but the district collector denied it.
The phenomenon was clearly visible for people living in the coastal areas.
In Ernakulam’s Paravur, a part of a rubber estate was charred. Scientists from the Geological Survey of India will be visiting the area soon.
“We have located a suspected impact crater in Karimalluer village and our team has rushed to the spot,” said Sekhar Kuriakose, a scientist with the Disaster Management Authority.