The Ramgarh–Munsiari thrust is a major orogen-scale fault that extends for more than 1,500 km along strike in the Himalayan fold-thrust belt. The fault can be traced along the Himalayan arc from Himachal Pradesh, India, in the west to eastern Bhutan. The fault is located within the Lesser Himalayan tectonostratigraphic zone, and it translated Paleoproterozoic Lesser Himalayan rocks more than 100 km toward the foreland. The Ramgarh–Munsiari thrust is always located in the proximal footwall of the Main Central thrust. Northern exposures (toward the hinterland) of the thrust sheet occur in the footwall of the Main Central thrust at the base of the high Himalaya, and southern exposures (toward the foreland) occur between the Main Boundary thrust and Greater Himalayan klippen. Although the metamorphic grade of rocks within the Ramgarh–Munsiari thrust sheet is not significantly different from that of Greater Himalayan rock in the hanging wall of the overlying Main Central thrust sheet, the tectonostratigraphic origin of the two different thrust sheets is markedly different. The Ramgarh–Munsiari thrust became active in early Miocene time and acted as the roof thrust for a duplex system within Lesser Himalayan rocks. The process of slip transfer from the Main Central thrust to the Ramgarh–Munsiari thrust in early Miocene time and subsequent development of the Lesser Himalayan duplex may have played a role in triggering normal faulting along the South Tibetan Detachment system.
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Was Himalayan normal faulting triggered by initiation of the Ramgarh-Munsiari Thrust?