New Delhi: The government on Thursday said that 5.9 million tonnes of lithium reserves have been found for the first time in the country in Jammu and Kashmir. “Geological Survey of India for the first time established Lithium inferred resources (G3) of 5.9 million tonnes in the Salal-Haimana area of the Reasi district of Jammu and Kashmir,” ANI quoted the Ministry of Mines.
It further said that 51 mineral blocks including Lithium and Gold were handed over to respective state governments. Lithium is a non-ferrous metal and is one of the key components in EV batteries. “Out of these 51 mineral blocks, 5 blocks pertain to gold and other blocks pertain to commodities like potash, molybdenum, base metals etc.
spread across 11 states of Jammu and Kashmir (UT), Andhra Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, Gujarat, Jharkhand, Karnataka, Madhya Pradesh, Odisha, Rajasthan, Tamil Nadu, and Telangana,” the ministry added. The blocks were prepared based on the work carried out by the Geological Survey of India (GSI) from field seasons starting from 2018-19 till date.
Apart from these, 17 reports of Coal and Lignite with a total resource of 7897 million tonnes were also handed over to the Ministry of Coal. Seven Publications on different themes and intervention areas in which GSI operates were also released during the meeting.
“The proposed Annual Programme for the ensuing Field Season 2023-24 was presented and discussed during the meeting. During the ensuing year 2023-24, GSI is taking up 966 programmes comprising 318 mineral exploration projects including 12 marine mineral investigation projects,” the ministry further said.
The GSI has formulated 115 projects on strategic and critical minerals and 16 projects on fertiliser minerals. “55 programmes on geoinformatics, 140 programmes on fundamental and multidisciplinary geosciences, and 155 programs for training and institutional capacity building have also been taken up,” the Mines ministry stated.
The GSI was established in 1851 to find coal deposits for the Railways. Over the years, GSI has not only grown into a repository of geo-science information required in various fields in the country but has also attained the status of a geo-scientific organisation of international repute.
Earlier, according to PTI, the mines ministry had said that to strengthen the critical mineral supply chain for emerging technologies, the government was taking several proactive measures to secure minerals, including lithium, from Australia and Argentina. Currently, India imports many minerals like lithium, nickel and cobalt.