Shifting of Mount Everest and Various Mountain Ranges in India

Shifting of Mount Everest and Various Mountain Ranges in India

Question: A massive 7.8 magnitude quake reversed the northeasterly course of the tallest peak in the world, Mount Everest recently though its height was unchanged by the disaster in Nepal. Discuss the basis of this phenomenon. Also elaborate on the different mountain ranges found in India.

Mount Everest’s Shift

• A 7.8 magnitude earthquake in Nepal recently reversed the gradual northeasterly course of the world’s tallest peak, Mount Everest straddling Nepal and China

• This was found by the National Administration of Surveying, Mapping and Geoinformation in China

• The height of the mountain at 8848 metres or 29,029 feet remained unchanged

• Everest moved 40 cams to the northeast in the past 10 years at the speed of 4 cm per year and rose by 3 cm during the same time

• Nepal has a fault line between two tectonic plates which bears India northwards into a plate carrying Europe and Asia at 2 cm per year, a process which created the Himalayan range

• The mountain has shifted towards the southwest due to the quake in Nepal.

Types of Mountain Ranges in India

Himalayan Mountain Range

• Himalayan mountain ranges include Karakoram, Hindu Kush and other lower ranges

• Karakoram is one of Asia’s Greater Ranges

• It is home to the highest peaks of the world including Mount Everest and K2

• Second largest glacier in the world, Siachen glacier is also part of the Himalayan range
Purvanchal Mountain Ranges

• These are an extension of the Great Himalayan ranges towards the northeast running parallel to the Ladakh and Karakoram range

• 3 hills which form part of this range include Patkai, Garo-Khasi Jaintia and Lushai Hills

• This densely forested mountain range is home to diverse flora and fauna

• Phawngpui is the highest peak in this range at the height of 7, 077 feet.

Vindhya Range

• Vindhya range is one of the top 7 holy mountain ranges in the country

• This range separates North from South as it runs across central India

• The southern slopes of the range are home to the River Narmada and form part of the Narmada valley

• The tallest peak of this range is Amarkantak at 3438 feet.

Satpura Range

• This is a mountain range located in C. India

• It extends across MP, Maharashtra and Chhattisgarh

• This range runs parallel to the Vindhya range

• The densely forested areas of this range are home to large mammals such as the Royal Bengal tiger, gaur and black buck

• The highest peak of the Satpura mountain range is Dhupgarh at the height of 4429 feet in MP


• This is the oldest mountain range in the nation

• It is also known as Mewat Hills and runs across from Rajasthan to Haryana

• The highest peak of this range is Guru Shikhar at the height of 5650 feet at Mount Abu

Sahyadri Mountain Ranges/Western Ghats

• This range starts from Gujarat border and ends at Kanyakumari/Indira Point

• 60% of this range is located in Karnataka

• This mountain range forms part of the Western Ghats

• Anaimudi in the Anamalai hills is the highest peak in the Ghats

Eastern Ghats

• They comprise an irregular range of mountains including 4 major rivers-Godavari, Mahanadi, Krishna and Kaveri

• The Shevaroy peak is the highest hill in this range

• The Nilgiri Hills known as the Blue Mountains lie at the meeting of the two ghats

Facts and Stats

• The Nepal quake occurred on account of a thrust fault wherein one piece of the crust of the earth is moving beneath another

• Himalayan mountain range and this fault in particular has experienced 4 devastating quakes in the past 100 years

• USGS issued a “red alert” for the casualties and economic damage caused due to the quake

• It also estimated 75% likelihood of 1,000 to 100,000 fatalities and losses between USD 1 to 10 billion due to the quake.
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