Impact of Neotectonism in the Discussion of Geomorphological Processes as a Feedback System: North Bengal Foothills, West Bengal

Mery Biswas


The ongoing research paper is concerned about the sensitive issue like neotectonism and its impact on the landscape development. It is a detail and micro level study of North Bengal Himalayan foothills where the effect of tectonism is precisely observed. The term, neotectonism was introduced by Obruchen (1948) to summarize the active tectonic processes including the last major tectonic configuration change and establishment of modern stress. The North Bengal Himalayan foothill are very much concerned about the neotectonism activities at last to present geological periods. It is the one of the active unstable area of NE India where faults/thrusts and presence of synformal axis are predominantly controlling the geomorphological landscape development. This frontal region of an active orogenic beltlikethe NE Himalaya is characterized by complex terrace morphology with fluvial aggradation, degradationandstrath terraces. The detail study is mainly about the lineaments, drainage sequences, thrusting zone and synformal depressed zone of the area. Near the Neora-Mal river valley, close to to the mountain front a thick supported boulder bed with huge angular boulders of gneisses are exposed near Neora valley of Samsing area. Concerning the fault zone area of Matiali scarp, it is very clearly observed the extended part of Garubathan thrust (MBT) under the Matiali formation near the upper part of Kurtiriver. But, in the middle part of the river, where the synformation axis is present, river terraces are magnificiently developed over two sides of R. Kurti near Matiali hat. Here, two terraces are well virtualized but the upper most flat terrain is designated as fan surface which is made of mainly by the sediments of Matialiformation. In this region, slope of the fan surface is southerly 2.1˚. In south of the Matiali scarp on the banks of R. Neora, Kurti, Murti raised terraces are distinctly observed as T1 and T2.There kinds of features have developed due to the active tectonic activities from last Pleistocene to recent Holocene. As an evidence , we can consider the recent seismic study with in meizoseismal zone of both the 1934 Bihar-Nepal and 1950 Assam earthquakes but last surface rupture with a recorded displacement of 14m of Chalsafault related to the historical earthquake in Nepal around 1100 AD (Kumar 2011). It is a positive feedback system where neotectonism and geomorphological landscape are well related and in a classical model of fault propagation; geomorphic evolution through the structure/process is present in respect of time and space.


Neotectonism, Landform, Topography

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