The earthquake struck at 7:19 pm local time on Thursday (11.19 am GMT) and was centred 98 kilometres east-northeast of Dali in Yunnan province. Xinhua
news agency reports that a total of 336 people were injured by the quake and more than 2,700 homes were destroyed. It said several of the victims suffered serious injuries.
was followed by several aftershocks. China National Seismological Network reported at least 8 aftershocks.
According to state officials,they have allocated 2,500 tents, 3,000 quilts and other relief materials to the affected region and two rescue teams, one headed by the Yunnan governor Qin Guangrong, and another from the Ministry of Civil Affairs and the National Commission for Disaster Reduction, were en route to the epicentre.
Last year, an earthquake of magnitude 8.0 shook Sichuan province in Southern China killing more than 87,000 people.