Minerals and natural resources in India Tnpsc

The natural resources of India include coal, where India has the fourth largest coal reserve in the world, also several other important mineral reserves such as Iron ore, manganese ore (7th largest reserve), bauxite (5th largest), thorium, etc.

The most important natural resources are Oil, coal, natural gas, metals, stone and sand. Of this India has abundant natural resources.

Metals are of two types: Ferrous and Non-Ferrous. Ferrous minerals have iron content such as iron, manganese, nickel, cobalt, tungsten, etc.

Non-ferrous minerals- do not have iron content such as gold, silver, copper, bauxite, etc.

Non-Metallic minerals

Nonmetallic minerals do not contain metals, such as mica, limestone, gypsum, potash, and coal. Non-metallic minerals are also called mineral fuels, such as coal and petroleum.

Distribution of natural resources in India

It is estimated that about 100 different minerals are known to be produced in India, out of which 30 are important. Most of the metallic minerals are found in the peninsular plateau regions, especially in old crystalline rocks. Mineral distribution is concentrated in three belts. Maybe some occurrence here and there is in isolated pockets.

The three belts are the northeastern plateau, southwestern plateau, and northwestern region.

Metallic Minerals

Iron Ore

Iron is not found in pure form, it is often mixed with lime, magnesium, phosphorous, silicon, etc. There are four types of iron ore Haematite, Magnetite, Limonite, and Siderite.

Haematite is reddish, also known as red ochre. It contains 60-70% of iron.

The major iron ore-producing states in India include:

  1. Odisha: Odisha is the largest producer of iron ore in India. The state’s Keonjhar and Sundargarh districts are particularly rich in iron ore deposits. The mines in this region mainly produce high-grade iron ore, contributing significantly to the country’s overall production.
  2. Chhattisgarh: Chhattisgarh is another major iron ore-producing state in India. The Bailadila mines in the Dantewada district of Chhattisgarh are known for their rich deposits of high-grade iron ore.
  3. Jharkhand: Jharkhand is home to some of the largest iron ore mines in India, located in the Singhbhum district. The Chiria mines in Singhbhum are known for their high-quality iron ore.
  4. Karnataka: Karnataka also contributes significantly to India’s iron ore production. The mines in Bellary and Hospet regions of Karnataka are key iron ore-producing areas.
  5. Goa: Although Goa was traditionally a major iron ore-producing state, the mining activities have faced environmental and legal challenges in recent years, leading to a decline in production.

The iron ore extracted from these regions is mainly of two types: hematite and magnetite. Hematite is the more abundant and preferred iron ore due to its higher iron content, making it suitable for steel production. Magnetite, while less abundant, also has a high iron content.

India’s iron ore is used both domestically and exported to other countries, particularly to meet the demand of the steel industry. The government has implemented various policies to regulate and manage iron ore mining activities, aiming for sustainable and responsible exploitation of this valuable natural resource.


The ore colour is dark brown to blackish and is called black ore. It has magnetic properties. It contains 70% of iron.

Karnataka: The Sandur-Hospet region in Karnataka is known for its magnetite deposits. The Kudremukh Mines in this region, once a major source of magnetite, were important for India’s iron ore production.

Andhra Pradesh: Magnetite deposits are found in the eastern part of Andhra Pradesh, particularly in the Kurnool district.

Tamil Nadu: The Salem and Tiruvannamalai districts in Tamil Nadu also have magnetite deposits.

Kerala: Some magnetite deposits are found in the Idukki district of Kerala.

Maharashtra: The Chandrapur district in Maharashtra is known for its magnetite deposits.


Magnetite is a valuable resource due to its high iron content. It is particularly important in the steelmaking industry, where iron ore is a crucial raw material. The iron content in magnetite is usually higher than in hematite, another common type of iron ore.


It is an inferior variety of iron ore and has many impurities and is also called iron carbonate. It contains 20 to 40% of iron.


It is yellow or light brown in colour, it is called hydrated iron oxide when the iron ore is mixed with oxygen and water. Its mining is cheaper and easier. It contains 40 to 60% of iron.

Iron ore reserves

India has 20% of the world’s total iron reserves. About 75% of the total reserves of iron ore in India are of haematite grade.

Jharkhand, Orissa, Karnataka, Madhya Pradesh, Chattisgarh, and Goa, have 97% of the total iron ore reserves of India.


It is a silver-grey element and it is very hard and brittle. Manganese is always available as a combination with iron, laterite, and other minerals.


It is widely used in iron and steel manufacturing. Also used for making various alloys. Used in making of batteries, bleaching powder, insecticides, paints, etc.

Manganese ore reserves

Found in Odisha (44%), Karnataka (22%), Madhya Pradesh (12%), Maharashtra(7%), Goa (7%), Andra Pradesh (4%), Jharkhand (2%).

Also found in Rajasthan Gujarat, Telangana, and West Bengal. The leading producers of Manganese Ore are the Nagpur, Bhandara, Ratnagiri districts of Maharastra.

Madya Pradesh

Balaghat, Chhindwara districts.


Sundargarh, Kalahandi, Koraput, and Bolangir districts are the major ones.

Other producers are:

Andhra Pradesh (13%)

Srikakulam, Visakhapatnam, Cuddapah, and Guntur districts.

Karnataka (6%)

Districts of Shimoga, Bellary, Chitradurga, and Tumkur.


Copper is an important metal that is used by prehistoric men. Bronze is an alloy of Copper, Zinc, and tin. Copper is used for making Electrical wires, Cooking utensils, etc.

Copper Ore Reserves

Rajasthan state has the largest copper reserve in the country that provides 53.81% of the total produce. It is followed by Jharkhand with 19.54% and Madhya Pradesh with 18.75%.

Other producers are Andhra Pradesh, Gujarat, Haryana, Karnataka, Maharashtra, Meghalaya, Nagaland, Odisha, Sikkim, Tamil Nadu, Telangana, Uttarakhand, and West Bengal. Together these states account for 7.9%.


Khetri, Alwar, and Bhilwara districts.


Dehradun and Garhwal Districts

Andra Pradesh

Guntur, Kurnool, and Nellore districts


Chitradurga and Hassan districts.


Bauxite is an important ore of Aluminium. This ore is found in rocks consisting mainly of hydrated aluminium. It is distributed in the areas of laterite soil.

Aluminium is lightweight and is used in the manufacturing of aircraft, automobile engines, manufacture of cement, various chemicals, etc.

Bauxite deposits are mainly found in Odisha (50.2%), Gujarat(15.8%), Jharkhand(11.9%), Maharashtra(9.9%), Chhattisgarh (6.2%) and Tamil Nadu (2.7%).

Non-Metallic Minerals

The Non-Metallic Minerals include Mica, limestone, gypsum, nitrate, potash, dolomite, coal, petroleum, etc


Mica is used in the electrical industry, as insulating material as it withstands high voltage and has a low power loss factor. Abhrak is a top-quality mica. Mica is translucent. It can be easily split into thin sheets.

It is also used in making lubricants, medicines, paints, and varnishes.

Mica Ore Reserves

Mica deposits are found in Andhra Pradesh(41%), Rajasthan(21%), and Odisha (20%).

Andra Pradesh

Nellore, Visakhapatnam, West Godavari, and Krishna


Bhilwara, Jaipur, and Ajmer districts


Rayagada, Bolangir, and Sundargarh districts


Palamu, Ranchi, and Singhbum districts.


These are rocks that are composed of calcium carbonate or the double carbonate of calcium and magnesium or both. The limestones also contain little silica, alumina, iron oxides, phosphorous, and sulphur.

These are used in making soda ash, caustic soda, bleaching powder, cement, steel plants, glass, fertilizers, and paper.

Limestone Ore Reserves

Andra Pradesh and Telangana produce the most limestone ores with 20% each. Rajasthan (20%), Madhya Pradesh (12%), Tamil Nadu (8.4%), and Karnataka has the most limestone reserves (27%), followed by Andra Pradesh and Rajasthan (12% each), Gujarat (10%), Meghalaya (9%), Telangana (8%), Chhattisgarh and Madhya Pradesh (5% each) and the remaining by other states.

Andra Pradesh

Cuddapah, Kurnool, and Guntur districts


Nalgonda, Adilabad, Warangal and Karimnagar


Jodhpur, Ajmer, Bikhaner and Kota

Madhya Pradesh

Jabalpur and Satna Districts


Salem, Kancheepuram, Tiruchirappalli, Thoothukkudi, Tirunelveli, and Virudhunagar districts.


Gypsum is hydrated sulphate of calcium. It is white, and opaque. These are found in the beds of sedimentary rocks such as limestone, sandstone, and shale.

It is used in the manufacture of cement, fertilizers, plaster of Paris, etc. It is also used in conditioning soil.

Gypsum Ore Reserve

Rajasthan state accounts for 81% of the total reserve in the country. Also, there is a 14% reserve in Jammu and Kashmir and a 2% Reserve in Tamil Nadu.

Also, 3% of resources were present in the states of Gujarat, Himachal Pradesh, Karnataka, Uttarakhand, Andhra Pradesh, and Madhya Pradesh.

Rajasthan produces 82% of the country, Jammu and Kashmir produce 14%, and other states such as Gujarat, Uttarakhand, Andhra Pradesh, and Tamil Nadu produces 4% each.


Jodhpur, Bikaner and Jaisalmer

Jammu and Kashmir

Baramula, Doda and Uri


Bhavnagar and Jamnagar


Dehradun and Mussourrie

Andhra Pradesh

Nellore, Guntur, and Prakasam District

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* * All the Notes in this blog, are referred from Tamil Nadu State Board Books and Samacheer Kalvi Books. Kindly check with the original Tamil Nadu state board books and Ncert Books.
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