KOLKATA: The Geological Survey of India has found a 70 million-year-old snake fossil, which represents the oldest snake in the world, from the Lameta Formation of Kheda district, Gujarat.

The well-preserved specimen, described as one of the most exciting discoveries by the GSI during its field season of 2006-07 (October-September), enhances knowledge of the origin and evolution of snakes.

This, along with its findings on shrinking of major glaciers due to global climate change, is likely to figure at the 42nd meeting of the Central Geological Programming Board (CGPB) in New Delhi on Friday.

The CGPB, consisting representatives of the Central and State governments, public sector undertakings and some academic institutions, is the national-level apex body which overviews the programme of geo-scientific activities.

Diamond exploration

The GSI found additional gold resource in Karnataka during 2006-07. This finding is significant as India is the world’s biggest gold importer. Diamond exploration too has led the GSI to new finds in Andhra Pradesh. ‘Hira ke khoj me’, a video film on diamond exploration by the GSI, will be screened at Friday’s meet.

Surveys for coal and lignite, ores (especially iron ore), gold, platinum group of metals and diamond would be among the GSI’s thrust areas in 2007-08.