A noted hydro-geologist and fossil expert from Kasauli in Himachal Pradesh, Dr Ritesh Arya has correlated the unusual behavior of lizards of attraction towards light sparks and heat generated by welding of pipes during a drilling operation in Ladakh Batholiths to propose a new theory of selective episodic extinction of Dinosaurs in India.

He has given the new concept based on Dinosaurs’ passion for light, fire, sparks, the heat emitted from the slowly creeping basalt.

“Many theories have been proposed to explain the extinction of Dinosaurs but all fail to explain selective extinction of Dinosaurs, who ruled the planet for more than 150 million years.

Continuation of finding fossils in traps and Intertrappeans of Deccan basalt which lasted for more than 30000 years as per reports published clearly show that Dinosaurs in India did not die instantly but gradually lovingly ended their lives for love of light fire heat in a similar way as moths are attracted to the light of candle,” said Dr Arya.

Dr Arya holds the Guinness Book of World Record for drilling the highest borewell and is currently director of water and geothermal section with International Sustainable Energy Organisation Geneva.

He is presenting his research paper titled ‘Love, Passion and Dinosaur Extinction in India’ at 36th International Geological Congress in Delhi in March, 2020 in a session to be chaired by Professor Gerta Keller   (USA) of Princeton University, who is an authority on the subject.

“My observation is based on the unusual behavior of lizards which were attracted to light sparks and heat generated by welding of pipes during drilling operation in Ladakh Batholiths along the Indus Suture Zone at Tiger Mahle for Indo Tibetan Border Police,” he said.

He said the attraction was so high that these lizards did not fear for their lives and moved closer to sparks of welding as the intensity increased.

“This made me think that in the past, Dinosaurs were not able to differentiate between natural heat/light and were attracted to heat and light of Continental Flood Deccan Basalts(CFDB) that gradually crept to their nesting sites. Covered with mud these nests were baked and preserved,” he said.

Dr Arya talks of taphonomic processes involved in the preservation of the largest nesting sites at Rayoli, Balasinor, (Gujarat) in those uncertain geological conditions prevalent during those times. “I was fascinated by them since I participated in the International field workshop held from Jabalpur (where the 1st Dinosaur egg was found) to Rayoli (where more than 10000 Dinosaur eggs have been reported to date),” he said.

Dr Arya, who did his Ph.D. on fossils from Kasauli and its surrounding areas and is making a small museum in home district Solan, where he plans to keep his fossil collection for the tourists and general public visiting this area.

He had earlier saved a 20 million years old fossil of a tree, which was uprooted near Parwanoo in Solan district during the four laning of national highway in 2016.

Last year, he claimed to have stumbled upon marine fossils of oysters, bivalves and gastropods at the site of the landslide in the same area.