• These provide a solid base to metallurgical industries in the country


  1. Iron Ore
    • It is a metal of universal use, and backbone of modern civilization
    • Iron is taken out in form of ore, and different types of ore contains varying proportion of iron
      • Haematite: this has around 70% of metallic content
        • Found in Dharwad and Cuddapah rock systems of peninsular India
        • Most of it is found in states of Odisha, Jharkhand, Chhattisgarh and Andhra Pradesh
        • In western section, major concentration is in Karnataka, Maharashtra and Goa
      • Magnetite
        • Second best ore, with metallic content varying from 60-70%
        • These have magnetic quality, and occur in Dharwad and Cuddapah systems
        • Most reserves are found in Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh, Rajasthan, Tamilnadu and Kerala
      • Limonite
        • These are inferior ores, which contain 40-60% iron metal
        • These are found in Raniganj coal field, Garhal in Uttarakhand, Mirzapur in Uttar Pradesh and Kangra valley of Himachal Pradesh
      • Siderite
        • These contain concentration less than 40%
        • It contains many impurities and hence mining not economically viable
      • Reserves
        • Haematite and Magnetite are two most important iron ores in India
        • About 97% of magnetite ore resources are located in four states of Karnataka(73%), Andhra Pradesh(14%), Rajasthan(5%) and Tamilnadu(4.9%)
        • Major source of Haematite are located in Odisha, Jharkhand, Chhatisgarh
      • Production and distribution
        • India is the 4th largest world producer ofiron ore
        • The major iron ore belts in India are listed below:
        • Odisha-Jharkhand belt
        • Durg-Bastar-Chandrapur belt in Chattisgarh
        • Ballari-Chitradurga-Chikkamagaluru-Tumakuru belt in Karnataka
        • Maharashtra-Goa belt
  • Orissa is the largest producer of Iron ore in India. Orissa accounts for over half of India’s iron ore production, produced 120 million tonnes during the 2019/2020 year.
  1. Manganese
    • It is an important mineral for making iron and steel; and it acts as a basic raw material for manufacturing alloys
    • India has second largest manganese ore reserves in the world after Zimbabwe
    • The total Manganese ores are distributed in Odisha(44%), Karnataka(22%), Madhya Pradesh(13%), Maharashtra(8%), Andhra Pradesh(4%) and Jharkhand & goa(3% each),
    • India is fifth largest producer of manganese ore after Brazil, Gabon, South Africa and Australia
    • Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh, Odisha, Andhra Pradesh and Karnataka are the major Manganese producing states
    • Over 4/5th of total production is consumed within the country, and less than 1/5th is exported
  2. Copper
    • Copper ore is found in ancient as well as in younger rock formations and occurs as veins, as dissemination and as bedded deposits
    • Mining for copper is a costly affair, as most ores contain a small percentage of the metal
    • Against the international average of metal content(in the ore) of 2.5%, Indian Ore grade averages less than 1%
    • Rajasthan has around 50% of total copper ore in the country; followed by Madhya Pradesh, Jharkhand
    • The rest are accounted for by Andhra Pradesh, Gujarat, Haryana, Karnataka, Maharashtra, Meghalaya, Nagaland, Odisha, Sikkim, Tamilnadu, Uttarakhand and West Bengal
    • When it comes to production, Madhya Pradesh is the largest producer of copper in India, followed by Rajasthan
    • The production of copper ore in the country always falls short of our requirements and India has to import copper from other countries; of which the major supply comes from USA, Canada, Zimbabwe, Japan and Mexico
  1. Nickel
    • It doesn’t occur free in nature and is found in association with copper
    • The important occurrences of Nickiliferous limonite are found in Jajapur district of Odisha
      • Nickel is found in Sulphide form in Jharkhand
      • Other important occurrences of Nickel are in Karnataka, Kerala and Rajasthan
    • About 92% of resources of Nickel are present in Odisha
      • Rest are distributed in Jharkhand, Nagaland and Karnataka
  1. Lead and Zinc
    • Lead is a widely used metal due to its malleability, softness, heaviness and bad heat conductivity
      • It doesn’t occur freely in nature, rather it occurs as a cubic sulphide known as galena
      • Galena is found in veins in limestones, calcareous slates and sandstones
    • Zinc is a mixed ore containing lead and zinc and is found in veins in association with galena and other sulphide ores
    • Rajasthan is endowed with the largest resources of lead-zinc ore, followed by Andhra Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, Bihar and Maharashtra
    • Resources are also established in Gujarat, Meghalaya, Odisha, Sikkim, Tamil Nadu, Uttarakhand and West Bengal
    • Almost entire production comes from Rajasthan
  2. Bauxite
    • This is an important ore for making Aluminium
    • Among states, Odisha accounts for 52% of country’s resources of bauxite followed by Andhra Pradesh, Gujarat, Chattisgarh, Maharashtra, Madhya pradesh and Jharkhand
    • When it comes to production, Odisha is the largest producer followed by Chattisgarh
  3. Gold
    • It is a valuable metal, used for making ornaments and is an international currency due to universal use
    • In term of metal content, Karnataka has the highest reserves followed by Rajasthan, reserves followed by Rajasthan, Bihar, Andhra Pradesh, Jharkhand
    • In terms of production, Karnataka is the largest producer followed by Andhra Pradesh
    • Apart from the gold mines in the above mentioned areas, some gold is collected from the sands and gravels of several rivers
      • Such deposits are called placer deposits
    • Alluvial gold is obtained from sands of Subarnarekha, and other rivers in Kerala
  4. Silver
    • The chief ore mineral of silver are agentine, stephanite, pyargyrite
    • It is also found mixed with several other metals such as copper, lead, gold, zinc, etc
    • The main production comes from Zawar mines in Udaipur district of Rajasthan
    • Some silver is produced in Karnataka and Andhra Pradesh as well