The discovery of huge bauxite deposits, particularly in the East Coast, is a case in point, which took the country from the phase of a nonentity to one having the fifth largest inventory of bauxite in the world.
In the Tenth Plan, greater emphasis was laid on mineral exploration by adoption of improved technologies like remote-sensing, geotechniques, etc., particularly for those minerals in which the resource base of the country is poor such as gold, diamond, nickel, tungsten, rock phoshpate, sulphur, etc. Today, the reserves details are available for as many as 20,000 mineral deposits all over the country.
The Indian Bureau of Mines has prepared inventory of mineral deposits for the country and updates it every five years. The country is self sufficient in case of 36 minerals and, deficient in respect of a number of minerals. The position is summarized as follows:
The search for minerals did not remain confined to landmass only. It was extended to off shore area and even Deep Ocean. Result was the discovery of large petroleum deposits in the Arabian Sea which came to be known as Bombay High.
The exploration work in the deep ocean led to the discovery of polymetallic nodules bearing cobalt, nickel, copper and manganese at a death of 3,000 metres. This work earned India the status of Pioneer Investor in seabed mining conferred by the United Nations.