Refining stratigraphic knowledge of some Palaeozoic and earlier rocks from the Himalaya
as a tool for understanding the Cenozoic tectonic history of the orogen
By Prof. Nigel Hughes
Through combination of revisionary work on fossils collected previously by others, and new fieldwork along and across the Himalayan margin, a zonation for the Cambrian of the subcontinent has been established that permits its integration with stratigraphic schemes for the Cambrian worldwide with reasonable confidence. This provides a framework for examining the nature of the Himalayan margin during Cambrian and adjacent times, and for examining the Cambrian-Ordovician Kurgiakh orogeny, an event that influenced the Indian sector of equatorial Gondwana and regions beyond including the Lhasa and Qiantang blocks of Tibet, and the Baoshan region of Sibumasu. Reconstructing the Proterozoic and early Palaeozoic structure of the margin has implications for understanding the uplift and erosional history of the Himalaya, and for the global record of Cenozoic oceanic chemistry. Building on our experience with a place-based geoscience education project in Bengali called monishar pathorer bon (Monisha and the Stone Forest) GSI/Monfakira Press, 2012) with the help of partners including APG-India we are now making an animated series about the subcontinent’s geological history called, in English “The Ocean on Top of Our Mountain”. We hope to make this freely available over the internet to children across the subcontinent.