The Himalaya mountain is relatively of recent origin.
It rose out of Tethys Ocean which is described as lying north of where Himalayas is now.
This description is found in Kishkindha Kanda of Ramayan, one of the Ithihasas of India.
When Sugreeva directs his army to search for Sita, who was abducted by Ravana, he directs them by explaining the Geographical features of each land.
In this context, the reference to Tethys Sea found.
This also fits in with Lemria continent description found in Ancient Tamil texts.
Please read my articles on Lemuria, Tamils.
‘On passing beyond that mountain in Uttara Kuru, there is a treasure trove of waters, namely vast of Northern Ocean, in the mid of which there is gigantic golden mountain named Mt. Soma.
The north of Himalayas is referred as the northern ocean. It is held that Himalayas have emerged from an ocean to where Vali used to leap everyday in the early hours to offer water oblation to the Sun.
tam atikramya shailendram uttaraH paysaam nidhiH |
tatra soma girir naama madhye hemamayo mahaan || 4-43-53
53. tam shailendram atikramya = that, mountain, the best, on passing beyond; uttaraH paysaam nidhiH= north, waters, treasure trove of – vast of Northern Ocean is there; tatra madhye= in its, midst; hema mayaH= completely golden one; mahaan= a gigantic one; soma giriH naama= Soma, mountain, named; mountain is there.
“On passing beyond that mountain in Uttara Kuru, there is a treasure trove of waters, namely vast of Northern Ocean, in the mid of which there is gigantic golden mountain named Mt. Soma. [4-43-53]
225 million years ago (Ma) India was a large island situated off the Australian coast and separated from Asia by the Tethys Ocean. The supercontinent Pangea began to break up 200 Ma and India started a northward drift towards Asia. 80 Ma India was 6,400 km south of the Asian continent but moving towards it at a rate of between 9 and 16 cm per year. At this time Tethys Ocean floor would have been subducting northwards beneath Asia and the plate margin would have been a Convergent oceanic-continental one just like the Andes today.
As seen in the animation above not all of the Tethys Ocean floor was completely subducted; most of the thick sediments on the Indian margin of the ocean were scraped off and accreted onto the Eurasian continent in what is known as an accretionary wedge (link to glossary). These scraped-off sediments are what now form the Himalayan mountain range.
From about 50-40 Ma the rate of northward drift of the Indian continental plate slowed to around 4-6 cm per year. This slowdown is interpreted to mark the beginning of the collision between the Eurasian and Indian continental plates, the closing of the former Tethys Ocean, and the initiation of Himalayan uplift.
(Note that in the above animation the continental plates are shown to collide at 10 Ma; this should instead read 50 Ma.)
The Eurasian plate was partly crumpled and buckled up above the Indian plate but due to their low density/high buoyancy neither continental plate could be subducted. This caused the continental crust to thicken due to folding and faulting by compressional forces pushing up the Himalaya and the Tibetan Plateau. The continental crust here is twice the average thickness at around 75 km. The thickening of the continental crust marked the end of volcanic activity in the region as any magma moving upwards would solidify before it could reach the surface.
The Himalayas are still rising by more than 1 cm per year as India continues to move northwards into Asia, which explains the occurrence of shallow focus earthquakes in the region today