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INTRODUCTION

CHANDIGARH: Chandigarh is a city and a union


territory of India that serves as the capital of the Indian
states of Haryana and Punjab. As a union territory, the
city is governed directly by the Union Government and
is not part of either state

Chandigarh is located near the foothills of the Sivalik range of the


Himalayas in northwest India. It covers an area of approximately
114 km2 It shares its borders with the states of Haryana and Punjab.
The exact cartographic co-ordinates of Chandigarh are

3044N 7647E30.74N 76.79E It has an average elevation of


321 meters (1053 ft).
DHARAMSHALA: Dharamshala (also spelled
Dharamsala) is the second winter capital of the Indian
state of Himachal Pradesh and a municipal corporation
in Kangra district. It also serves as the district
headquarters. It was formerly known as Bhagsu. The
Dalai Lama's residence and the headquarters of Central
Tibetan Administration (the Tibetan government in
exile) are in Dharamshala. Dharamshala is 18
kilometers from Kangra.
Dharamshala has an average elevation of 1457 metres (4780 feet),
covering an area of almost 8.51 km.

Dharamsala is located in the Kangra Valley, in the shadow of the


Dhauladhar mountains.

The city is divided into two distinct sections. Kotwali Bazaar and the
surrounding markets are referred to as "Lower Dharamshala" or just
"Dharamshala." Further up the mountain is McLeodGanj separated in
between by the village of Ganchen Kyishong, the home of the Tibetan
government-in-exile. A steep, narrow road connects McLeodGanj
from Dharamshala and is only accessible to taxis and small cars,
while a longer road winds around the valley for use by buses and
trucks. McLeodGanj is surrounded by pine, Himalayan oak, and
rhododendron.

The main crops grown in the valleys below are rice, wheat and tea.
OVERVIEW OF THE HIMALAYAS
The Indian plate broke off from the Gondwana
land in Early Creataceous (~130-125) and drifted
northward. It is subducted beneath the Asian
plate, and subsequently collided with it around
56 Ma, giving rise to the well known Himalayan
mountain range. The northerly movement of
Indian plate is presently going on with velocity
varying from about 2 to 4 cm/year. Due to such a
geodynamic activity, the Himalayan terrain has
been and is under lateral compression from south
and southwest, resulting in continuous
deformation of rocks in the form of folding,
faulting, fracturing, shearing, metamorphism and
igneous activity on regional scale. A number of
planes of major discontinuities namely HFT, MBT,
MCT, TDF and ITSZ which runs along the
Himalaya are the conspicuous manifestations this
activity. Along these northerly dipping thrust such
as HFT, MCT and MBT in this orogenicbelt, the
Indian plate has been sliced through southerly
over thrusting. The Himalaya is subdivided into
five major longitudinally continuous litho tectonic
zones. From south to north the zones are:
LESSER HIMALAYAS:
The Lesser or Lower Himalaya is limited by the
Main Boundary Thrust (MBT), also designated as
Main Boundary Fault (MBF) to its south and the
MCT to its north and consist of the Late
Proterozoic to Early Cambrian sediments intruded
by some granites and acid volcanic. It mainly
comprises the marine sequences of Late
Proterozoic to Early Cambrian age and some
sedimentary record of transgressing shallow sea
during Permian and Late Cretaceous to Early
Eocene periods.

The predominant rock types are quartzite,


siltstone, shale and carbonates. There are zones
of phyllite, schist, with subordinate marbles,
metamorphosed mafic rocks, and augen
orthogneiss. The MBT separates the northern
Lesser Himalayan sediment from the sediments
of sub-Himalaya to the south.
MAIN CENTRAL THRUST(MCT)
The Main Central Thrust (MCT) is a major
intracontinental thrust in the Himalayas which
plays a central role in any discussion on the
geodynamic evolution of the Himalayas. It is
responsible for a significant proportion of the
shortening consequent upon the India-Asia
collision. However, identification and location of
MCT has always been problematic in all the
sectors of the Himalayas.
Another important feature of the MCT is that it is
associated with an inverted metamorphic
sequence where the grade of metamorphism
increases towards the higher topographic and
structural levels. This is called inverted
metamorphism originally described by Pilgrim
and West (1928) from the Chur area (Himachal
Pradesh). A fairly noncontroversial definition of
the MCT was given by Stephenson et al. (2001)
as follows: The MCT is the large scale high strain
zone of distributed deformation commonly
coincident with the zone of inverted
metamorphism from kyanite to biotite, which
places the mid Tertiary metamorphic rocks of the
High Himalayan complexes southwards over
relatively unmetamorphosed Precambrian-
Paleozoic rocks of the Lesser Himalayan.
Several but conflicting models have been
proposed to explain the Himalayan inverted
metamorphism. Some interpretations suggest a
tectonic inversion of isograds through recumbent
folding, thrusting, or shearing.
Other models invoke complex interactions
between the tectonic evolution and thermal
processes such as crustal radiogenic heating,
heat advection; shear heating, heat transfer
between hot hanging wall and colder foot wall
during thrusting, and heat focusing beneath the
sediments capping the metamorphic core.
According to Le Fort (1975) frictional heating
along the MCT has been responsible for
Himalayan inverted metamorphism and
generation of Cenozoic leucogranites.

GEOLOGY OF SHIWALIKS:
Geologically, the Sivalik Hills belong to the tertiary deposits of the
outer Himalayas. They are chiefly composed of sandstone and
conglomerate rock formations, which are the solidified detritus of the
great mountain range to their north, but often poorly consolidated.
The remnant magnetization of siltstones and sandstones suggests a
depositional age of 16-5.2 million years with Karnali River exposing
the oldest part of the Sivalik Hills in Nepal.

They are the southernmost and geologically youngest east-west


mountain chain of the Himalayas. They have many sub-ranges and
extend west from Arunachal Pradesh through Bhutan to West Bengal,
and further westward through Nepal and Uttarakhand, continuing into
Himachal Pradesh and Kashmir. The hills are cut through at wide
intervals by numerous large rivers flowing south from the Himalayas.

They are bounded on the south by a fault system called the Main
Frontal Thrust, with steeper slopes on that side. Below this, the coarse
alluvial Bhabar zone makes the transition to the nearly level plains.
Rainfall, especially during the summer monsoon, percolates into the
bhabar, then is forced to the surface by finer alluvial layers below it in
a zone of springs and marshes along the northern edge of the Terai or
plains.

North of the Sivalik Hills the 1,500-3,000 meter Lesser Himalayas


also known as the Mahabharat Range rise steeply along fault lines. In
many places the two ranges are adjacent but in other places structural
valleys 1020 km wide separate them.

GEOLOGY OF DHARAMSHALA
The fullest account or the
geology of the District Kangra is
that given by the late Mr.
Medlicott or the Geological
Survey as far back as 1864
since then no more detailed
survey of the District has been
carried out, although geological
researches carried out elsewhere
have thrown some light on the
structure of the rocks and their
general relationship which are
applicable to the rocks of this
District also. Other references
are to be found in A sketch of
the Geology and Geography of
the Himalaya Mountains and
Tibet" by Colonel Burrard and
Mr. H.H. Hayden, Report on the
Kangra Earthquake of 1905"
(Volume XXXVIII or the
Geological Survey of India), the
article in Chapter I-A of thc
Chamba State Gazetter ( 1904)
by the late lieutenant- General
C.A, McMahon, Commissioncr of
lahore : Chapter I-A and map of
the Kulu Gazetteer (1917), "and
Sketch of the Geology of the
Punjab, 1883- 84" by Mr.
Medlicott.The following account
is largely composed of extracts
from these articles :- The rock-
facies to be met with in Kangra
proper fall into two broad
stratigraphical zones, which
almost coincide with the
orographical zones of the
Dhaula Dhar and the lower hills.

These zones are--

( 1) An outer or Sub-Himalayan zone composed of


sediments for the most part of Tertiary age, but
including also some sub-recent deposit.".

(2) A central or Himalayan zone comprising most of


the Dhaula Dhar. This is composed of granite and other
crystalline rocks and a group of unfassiliferous
sediments of unknown age.
The following table
the classification and the more important sub-divisions,
the details of which have been worked out in the Kalka-
Simla area :-

PINJAUR GARDEN
Pinjaur Dun (Figure 1) is one of the highly populated and rapidly
developing industrial belts of the northwestern outer Himalaya, India.
The Late Quaternary landforms in this Dun are in the form of alluvial
fans (Figure 2) dated between 96 and 20 ka (refs 16, 17) and
deposited in front of the Nalagarh Thrust (NT). Subsequently, these
deposits have undergone back tilting and warping of fluvial and
alluvial fan surfaces and fault scarplets in the Quaternary deposits.
This is observed along most of the active faults in the Pinjaur
Dun5,11,1820. Active tectonics in the Pinjaur Dun is manifested in
the form of dislocation of landforms in Quaternary sediments by
major and minor faults. Many active faults have been identified in this
Dun5,11,18. Among the active faults identified so far, the Pinjaur
Garden Fault (PGF) is a prominent fault striking NNW SSE,
exposed near Pinjaur town. In the Quaternary sediments deposited in
northwestern part of the Pinjaur Dun, we have identified new trace of
an active fault which is parallel to NT near Nalagarh in Himachal
Pradesh. The area around Nalagarh has three major landform units:
the Late Pleistocene alluvial fan, the fluvial terraces and the bedrock
hills composed of Tertiary (Siwaliks and SubathuDagshaiKasauli)
rocks (Figures 2 and 3). Here NT is expressed by thrusting of Lower
Tertiary rocks (comprising olive green and reddish sandstone and
shale) over the Late Pleistocene alluvial fan deposits (Location-I in
Figure 4 a). The alluvial fan deposit, 10 m thick above the present
ground level, is mainly composed of gravel, sand and silty mud units,
exposed over a distance of about 150 m at Kirpalpur, a village
adjacent to Nalagarh township (Figure 3 a). The fan deposit has been
folded, and reversely faulted by another younger fault (Location-II in
Figures 3 b and 5) that is about 100 m south of NT at Kirpalpur in
(Location-I in Figure 3). The fault restricted to the fan deposit has
subdued surface expression and is discontinuous due to widespread
agricultural and ongoing rapid industrial activities in the Pinjaur Dun.
The easterly extension of this fault in the Quaternary fan deposit in
the Pinjaur Dun has been exposed near the village Kheda (Location-
IV in Figure 3), which is about 3500 m SE of Location-II. Here the
exposure of Quaternary sediments shows almost similar reverse
displacement of Quaternary gravel, as observed in Location-II. About
400 m SE from Location-I, another distinct exposure of the fault is
observed at Location-III (Figure 4 b). The fault exposure reveals that
the lower Tertiary rocks have been thrust with an angle of 26
towards ENE direction over the younger Quaternary fluvial terrace.
KAUSHALAYA
DAM:
WE have seen MBT and MCT at the kaushalaya dam
SAKETI FOSSIL PARK
1.)ELEPHANT JAW FOSSILS
2.)COW AND BUFFALO FOSSIL(FOSSILS OF
BOVIDS):
THESE ARE THE ANCIENT FOSSILS OF BOVIDS
FAMILY
3.)SKULL OF NARMADA MAN
REACTIVATION OF HFT
IN FRONTAL HIMALAYAS
AND KALA AMB:
The HFT is manifested in the Quaternary, rather in the
younger alluvium, in the form of discontinuous
rangefront scarps that truncate the Quaternary fluvial
terraces and alluvial fans and form the southernmost
active tectonic mountain front of the Himalaya. To
understand the active tectonics at HFT further,
palaeoseismological study has been carried out in its
vicinity along the Himalayan Front near Kala Amb,
Singhauli village, ~ 10 km southeast of the Kala Amb
township (Figure 1). The HFT
in the Kala Amb area dips 2030 towards N to NNE. It
brings the Tertiary rocks (here the Middle Siwalik
sandstones) over the Quaternary alluvium (here the
IndoGanga Alluvium) in the piedmont zone (Figure 6).
Active deformation along HFT is recognized by the
presence of fault scarps (although presently scarps are
degraded and modified to some extent), and uplifted
and back-tilted Late Pleistocene and Holocene deposits.
Trench excavation: A trench excavation survey was
carried out along the left bank of Singhauli Nala, across
the faulted and displaced fluvial terrace in the
topographic front uplifted along HFT at Singhauli village
(Figure 7). The trench log (Figure 8) helped in the
reconstruction of the lithostratigraphic succession of
the deposits, which consist mainly of Late Pleistocene
and Holocene clastic deposits of fluvial origin overlying
the Tertiary Middle Siwaliks. Although the lithologic
units in the trench wall show stratification, they are
further deformed and at places have distinct erosional
contacts with the overlying units. Based on variations
of colour, matrix, size and distribution of the clasts,
individual sedimentary units were distinguished within
the excavated section. Besides the oldest Middle
Siwalik sandstone (unit A), the Quaternary units are
further divided into eight separate principal
sedimentary sub-lithological units, from unit B (oldest)
to unit I (youngest) (Figure 8). They are comprised of
subangular to angular, pebble to boulder-sized clasts
that exhibit matrix or clasts-supported nature. The
boulders vary in size from a few centimetres to > 1.5 m
at places. Compositionally, the clasts consist of grey
and pink sandstone, indicating its derivation from the
hinterland Tertiary mountain ranges. From south to
north, the trench wall shows three thrust faults: Fault-0,
Fault-I and Fault-II, which are parallel to the HFT thrust
plane (Figures 7 and 8). Towards the southernmost part
of the trench within the Late Pleistocene fluvial
sediments, Fault-0 displaced and deformed the units B
F. Also, ~ 9 m north of Fault-0 another fault, i.e. Fault-I
is observed (Figure 8). This fault (Figure 7 c) dips
23N, along which the Middle Siwalik sandstone has
thrust over the units BE. However, the tip of Fault-I has
been later eroded and covered (Figure 7 c) by a
channelfill deposit (unit I).
ROAD TRIP OF
CHANDIGARH
Many types of faults and folds can be seen in the
way in Chandigarh to nahan like
Faults
Folds
Bedding plain
Joints
clevages etc.
2.)rocks movement on a hill

3.)SANDSTONE ROCKS:
MCLEODGANJ:
The area forming the subject-matter of the
present paper falls in the Lesser Himalayan Zone
and is situated on the southern slopes of the
Dhauladhar Range which rises to the maximum
height of 16,500 feet. The average height of
Dharm- sala town which is the district
headquarters of Kangra District ranges from
4,000 to 6,000 feet. The major part of the town is
covered by the glacial deposits, but in the upper
Dharmsala and on the southern slopes of
Dhauladhar Range the exposures are very good
and they display fascinating geology exhibiting
eomplex thrust tectonics. The stratigraphic
position of most of the formations remains
doubtful on account of their being unfossiliferous.
The stratigraphic sequence worked out by the
authors is as follows (modified after N,XVTI~L et
al., 1962) (see p. 55I).

TECTONICS
The Dharmsala area is characterized by two main
thrusts
2): a) The southern margin of the Chandpur
Formation makes a thrust contact with the
underlying Dharmsala Traps and Dharmkot
Limestone Formation. b) The Dharmsala Group
forms a thrust contact with the overlying Subathu
Formation, Dharmkot Limestone Formation
andThe two thrusts show parallelism to each
other and have a Himalayan trend, suggesting
that they were formed as a result of tectonic
movements of Hima- layan age. Dharmsala Traps,
Dharmkot Limestone Formation and Subathu
Formation which lie between the main thrusts,
appear to have been sandwitched, and sub-
sequent thrusts (thrusts between Subathu
Formation, Dharmkot Limestone For- mation and
Dharmsala Traps) were probably formed as a
result of relative move- ments along the main
thrust planes. The complex tectonic zone of
thrusting of Dharmsala area appears to resemble
with the tectonic structures found in the
Schuppan Zone. Dharmsala Traps.

DHAULADHAR FOLIATED
GRANITE
The foliated granite of Dhauladhar massif in
Dharmsala is well exposed on the track from Calu
Devi to Trinnd and beyond. It has a typical
granitic composition and is comprised of quartz,
felspar (orthoelase and microeline), biotite and
musco- vite. In some cases garnet occurs as an
accessory constituent. The granite shows a
porphyritic texture. Phenocrysts of felspar
(orthoelase and microcline), ranging in size from
1 era. to 4 cms. in length occur in the matrix of
quartz, felspars and micas. The granitic mass has
acquired a foliation, showing Himalayan trend of
NW- SE, as a result of Himalayan deformation. It
is generally foliated but weakly foliated and
unfoliated types also occur. Aplites and
pegmatites of varying thickness, few ram. to 20
metres occur as sills and dykes in the granitic.

DHARAMSHALA TRAPS
Several outcrops of basic volcanic rocks with
structures characteristic of lavas and tufts
containing vesicular cavities and amygdules are
exposed between Channa Pass (82 ~ 17":76 ~
15') in the northwest to Khari Behi, and further in
the southeast from Lindi Behi to several miles
eastwards. The thickness of traps varies from a
few feet to 850 feet in Dharmsala area. Different
varieties of these traps within the basaltic type
have been described by GtrPTA (1966) and
others and they have classified them into non-
vesicular, vesicular, schistose and the type
containing quartzo-felspathic and carbonaceous
inclusions. In general, they are medium to fine
grained; greenish, purple and brownish green in
colour; have vesicular cavities and amygdules at
places which have been filled with zeolites and
epidote. The schistose varieties have been
metamorphosed to chlorite schists. At places
cherty bands are found within these traps and
near Yol irregular patches of carbonaceous
schistose phyllites also occur. These traps have
no contact effects on the overlying and
underlying rocks. At places, thin bands of
calcareous gritty to conglomeratic rock is found
between the traps and Dharmkot Limestone
Formation. In the Manji Khad and Khanyara,
inclusions of quartzo-felspathie and
carbonaceous material ranging in size from a few
ems. to about 8 meters in length and one meter
in width are found at the contact of traps and the
Tertiary sueeession. The Dharmsala Traps are
considered to be part of the Dalhousie Traps in
the northwest and Drang Traps in the southeast.
The trap succession has anamolous relationship
with the underlying and overlying rocks. Near
Khari Behi, these traps form intermediate horizon
between the Dharmkot Limestone Formation and
sheeny phyllites whereas in the Manji Khad, it lies
between the Tertiaries and phyllites considered to
range in age from Precambrian to Lower
Palaeozoic. The trap succession of Dalhousie-
Dharmsala-Drang areas has been studies by
several workers (McMAHON, 1882, 1888;
LYDEKKEtl, 1883; WEST, 1988; NAUTIYAL et al.,
1952; GUPTA, 1966; KANWAR & G*SPTA, 1966;
FUCHS, 1967; KANWA~, 1968; PATWARDHAN et
al., 1970) and petrographic descriptions have
been given. These authors have given passing
remarks on the stratigraphie posi- tion of these
traps but there seems to be little uniformity as
the ages assigned by them are contradicting and
range from "post-Algonkian to Triassic". The
authors are of the opinion that these traps were
poured nut at the time of Hercynian epiorogenic
movements which were of widespread scale and
affected nearly the entire belt of Himalaya during
the Upper Carboniferous to Lower Permian
Periods. These epiorogenic movements in parts
of Spiti, Kinnaur, Ku- maon, Nepal, etc., are
marked by the absence of Upper Carboniferous to
Lower Permian rocks. In Kashmir, this period
witnessed a widespread volcanic activity which
was accompanied with nrarine transgressions
and regressions. The occur-- rence of tufts, ashes
and dense pyroxenic traps considered to be
representing Upper Carboniferous to Lower
Permian snccession has been reported from near
Puga in Ladakh (BERTn~:LSEN, 1958; Gt:PTA,
1972). The authors believe that the entire belt of
Himalaya was affected by tectonic movements as
a result of Her- eynian epiorogeny and as such
several weak zones were formed in different
parts through which lava poured out. In addition,
these mnvements resulted in the forlnation of
several localized basins in which deposition
during the sub- sequent periods took place. The
limestone succession in parts of Dharmsala
(l)harmkot Limestone Formation) and Drang are
younger than the traps and this is confirmed by
the fact that the trap wash and trap fragments
are found within the limestone succession
exposed near Drang. The authors consider Pan-
jal, Chamba, Dalhousie, Dharmsala and Drang
Traps to be homotaxial and are of the opinion
that whereas volcanic activity in parts of Kashmir
persisted up to Triassic Period, it was of shorter
duration (Upper Carboniferous to Lower Per-
mian) in other areas.

DHARAMKOT LIMESTONE
FORMATION
This formation is named after the Dharmkot
village and extends from near Kareri in the NW to
Khaniyara in the east of Dharmsala. The
limestone succes- sion of this formation is
sandwitehed between the two steeply inclined
thrusts as a result of which it comes in contact in
the south with the Tertiaries and in the north with
Chandpur Formation and Dharmsala Traps.
According to NAUTIYAL et al. (1952), this
limestone sequence tectonically belongs to the
para- autoehthonous structural unit of Dharmkot-
Baijnath region.
Lithologically these limestones consists of
dolomitie limestone, calcareous to magnesian
shales of red eolour, dark shales and dark grey
limestones, pink limestone which at places is
oolitic, brecciated dolomite and magnesian lime-
stone. PANDE et al. (1970) recorded the
occurrence of several forms of stromatolites from
the grey breeeiated dolomitic limestone lying just
above the Dharmsala Group on the Meleodganj-
Galu Devi road. The conclusions derived from the
study of these stromatolites are significant in
view of the fact that they have contradicted the
stratigraphie value of these organo-sedimentary
structures. NAUTIYAL et al. (1952), NAnAIN
(1966) and others have done detailed chemical
analysis of the various members of this limestone
formation and the Himachal Pradesh Government
has decided to set up a cement plant near
Dharmsala. These authors have proposed the
following divisions of the limestone belt: a) Pink
limestone -- Bal ridge, north and south faces of
Dharmkot hill. b) Dark grey limestone -- Supainu
nala, Galu Devi, Dharmkot hill, Khatasi, Lind/Behi.
c) Dolomites and magnesian limestone. d) Red
calcareous shales and dolomitie limestone. e)
Carbonaceous shales. Both the pink and dark
grey limestone have been considered suitable for
the manufacture of Portland cement and reserves
of about 17.6 m. tons have been calculated. The
stratigraphie position of this limestone formation
has not been precisely defined in view of tile fact
that both the upper and lower contacts are
tectonic- ally disturbed. It has been correlated
with the Shall (BomEu vide MISI/A, 1969; NAt/AIN,
1966) and Krol Formations (NAuTIYAL et al.,
1952). NAUTr~AL et al. (1952) have considered
this formation to be "Para-autoehthonous" and as
such its correlation with the Krol Formation is
supported by the fact that the latter is also
considered to be "Para-autochthonous"
(GANSSER, 1964; PANDE & SAXENA, 1968). Fucns
(1967) correlated the limestones, quartzites and
phyllites succession near Mandi with the Shall
Formation and subsequently considered Shall and
Krol Formations to be homotaxial. SRIKANTIA
SHARMA (1969) and SflIKANTIA (1972) have
assigned age of Shall Formation to the Salt
deposits of Drang and associated rocks (Lokhan)
exposed near Drang, Mandi District. These
authors have considered Drang Traps to be
younger than Sundernagar Formation and older
than Ropri member of Shall Formation. GUPTA
(1966) considered these traps to be post-
Chandpurs and pre-Tertiary and pre-Dharmkot
Limestone in age. KANWA (1968) assigned
Triassic age to this limestone formation. The
authors are of the opinion that the limestone
succession was deposited after the pouring out of
lava flows which resulted in the deposition of
Dalhousie- Dharmsala-Drang Traps. This is
supported by the fact the trap wash and trap
fragments were encountered in the core samples
of limestone during drilling near Drang. Since the
Dharmkot Limestone Formation and the
limestone exposed near Drang are eonsidered
homotaxial it can be concluded that the
Dharmkot Limestone Formation is post-trappean
in age. The authors have assigned Permo-
Carboniferous age to the traps and as such the
Dharmkot Limestone Formation can be
considered to be of Late Permian to Early Triassic
age. This stratigraphic position for the limestone
formation fits in well with the generally accepted
strati- graphic position of the Krol Formation.

GEO ENVIRONMENTAL HAZARD


IN DHARAMSHALA:
INTRODUCTION
Geoenvironment is a significant part of the
ecosphere and ecosphere consists of
atmosphere, geosphere (lithosphere),
hydrosphere, and biosphere. Geoenvironment
includes a significant portion of the geosphere
and portions of both the hydrosphere and the
biosphere (1). In other words, it is the solid
matter of the earth that influences or is
influenced by both biotic and abiotic factors. It is
defined as limited to the uppermost parts of the
lithosphere, which is affected by human
activities (2). Geoenvironment is that part of
lithosphere, which directly influences the
conditions for the existence and development of
society, which the man exploits and converts (3).
In India, systematic geo-environmental studies
were initiated in 1968 by the Geological Survey
of India for environmental problems associated
with Quaternary geological and geo-
morphological investigation on the Brahmaputra
river basin to adding flood-control planning.
Further diversification took place in 1970-71 with
initiation of urban geology and regional
development and district level multi-disciplinary
studies on 1:250,000 scale, beginning with
drought-prone and rural area of Anantpur district
in Andhra Pradesh and Puruliya district in West
Bengal (4). Consequent to Indian adherence to
the formal declaration of United Nations
Conference on Human Environment at Stockholm
on 5th June, 1972, geoenvironmental
investigations in Geological Survey of India (GSI)
were given due importance in the formulation of
its annual programs of investigations. Urban
geological and related geoenvironmental
investigations were initiated in 1974 for the Delhi
metropolitan area and the twin cities of
Hyderabad-Secunderabad in Andhra Pradesh.
. DAL LAKE - A NATURAL
WETLAND: Dal Lake is a small mid-latitude
lake situated in Upper Dharamshala at a height of
1,800 m from mean sea level. The lake is like an
egg shape and is surrounded by beautiful deodar
trees in the back drop which further enhances its
beauty and provides tranquility to the visitors.
The lake has got a religious significance and is
considered as a sacred spot. It has a small
temple on its bank. The bank of the lake is
enlivened during September by a fair attended
by a large number of people. Throughout the
year this lake attracts tourists from all over the
world. Wetlands constitute integral components
of landscapes, possess very high biological
productivity, have tremendous resource potential
and environment function (14). Wetlands, which
generally consist of water, soil, vegetation and
microorganism systems, are important for
maintaining aquatic ecosystem biodiversity (15),
and are being looked upon as sources of food and
as wildlife habitats, sustaining plants, animals,
and even humans (16). The global researches of
wetlands mainly focus on ecology, biodiversity
and conservation (17), water quality
improvement (18), circulation of materials
(biogeochemical cycle) (19), and environmental
restoration [(20)-(22)