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This chapter examines the history of reconnaissance and geological mapping work on the Andaman and Nicobar islands. To understand early exploration it is necessary to review the driving forces for colonization, including the development of the Andaman Islands as a penal colony for political prisoners. Geological mapping conducted in the colonial era continued after India gained independence in 1947 and expanded in the 1980s to include hydrocarbon and mineral resources. More recent work has placed greater emphasis on supporting field observation data with geochronological, geochemical and petrological analyses.

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