The intertrappean sediments associated with Deccan Continental Flood Basalt (DCFB) sequence at Ninama in Saurashtra, Gujarat yielded palynoassemblage comprising at least 12 genera and 14 species including Paleocene taxa such as Intrareticulites brevis, Neocouperipollis spp., Striacolporites striatus, Retitricolpites crassimarginatus and Rhombipollis sp. The lava flows of Saurashtra represent the northwestern most DCFB sequence in India. It is considered that the Saurashtra lava flows represent the earliest volcanic activity in the Late Cretaceous of the Reunion Mantle Plume on the northward migrating Indian Plate. The present finding of the Paleocene palynoflora from Ninama sediments indicate Paleocene age for the associated lava flows occurring above the intertrappean bed which suggests that the Saurashtra plateau witnessed eruption of Deccan lava flows even during Paleocene. The clay mineral investigation of the Ninama sediments which are carbonate dominated shows dominance of low charge smectite (LCS) along with the presence of mica and vermiculite. Based on the clay mineral assemblage it is interpreted that arid climatic conditions prevailed during the sedimentation. The smectite dominance recorded within these sediments is in agreement with global record of smectite peak close to the Maastrichtian-Paleocene transition and climatic aridity.
Volume 129, 2020
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