Environment & Biodiversity

Geo-Heritage Sites of India

  • Pandavula Gutta, an ancient geological marvel that predates the Himalayan ranges, has been formally classified as Telangana’s only geo-heritage monument.
  • In addition, the 165 million-year-old meteor Ramgarh Crater in Rajasthan was designated a geo-heritage site. 

[A] Pandavula Gutta

  • Pandavula Gutta is in Jayashankar Bhupalpally District, Telangana.
  • It is renowned for its rock art and geological history.
  • The site contains Palaeolithic cave paintings portraying wildlife and symbolism.
  • It was discovered in 1990 and depicts human occupation from the Mesolithic to the Middle Ages.
  • Recognised as Telangana’s lone geo-heritage monument, older than the Himalayan hills.

[B] Ramgarh Crater

  • The Ramgarh Crater, also known as the Ramgarh Structure, Ramgarh Dome, and Ramgarh Astrobleme, is a meteor impact crater near the town of Ramgarh in Rajasthan’s Baran District.
  • It is recognised as an asteroid impact crater in India, excavated within the sandstone, shale, and limestone strata of the Vindhyan Region’s Lower Bhander Formation.
  • It was produced by a meteorite impact and has a diameter of 3.2 km and an elevation of more than 200 metres above the surrounding landscape.
  • It is a Conservation Reserve, namely Ramgarh Conservation Reserve, under the Wildlife (Protection) Act of 1972, and a registered wetland under the Wetland (Conservation & Management) Rules of 2017.

What is a Geo-Heritage Site?

  • Geo-Heritage Sites in India are geological features that are culturally or naturally significant, provide insights into Earth’s evolution, or serve educational objectives.
  • The Geological Survey of India (GSI) and the various state governments recognise and safeguard these sites.
  • India now has 34 National Geological Heritage Monument sites. 
  • Examples:
  1. Mawmluh Cave in Meghalaya
  2. Majuli Island in Assam
  3. Chabimura in Tripura
  • Purpose:
  1. Promote geotourism
  2. Preserve unique geological formations
  3. Enhance geological literacy among the public

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