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K. C. Pandey
(1960-    )

Krishna Chandra Pandey, owner and proprietor of Superb Minerals India and the Gargoti Mineral Museums, was born on May 31, 1960 in Uttar Pradesh state, India, and moved to Mumbai (Bombay) in 1978. He was introduced at a young age to the pleasures of collecting Indian zeolites and associated minerals by his elder brother and began to build his collection in 1980, becaming ever more fascinated and passionate about collecting and dealing in mineral specimens.

Pandey served in the Naval Aviation division of the Indian military for 15 years, retiring in 1993. He earned his Bachelor of Engineering (Mechanical Engineer) degree, specializing in Aeronautical Engineering from the Naval college of Engineers, INS Shivaji, Lonawala, and from the Naval Air technical institute, Nave Base, in Cochin. Since then he has been continuously involved in the mineral business, and has been educating himself in mineralogy. In January 1994 he established Superb Minerals India Pvt. Ltd., then the only private limited company in India that was involved in zeolite exploration and exporting. That same year he participated in the Tucson Gem and Mineral Show for the first time, and still considers that first Tucson Show to have been an important turning point in his life. Today, Superb Minerals India is responsible for about 80% of all mineral specimen exports from India. K. C. Pandey serves as Managing Director and his younger brother, Ramesh Chandra Pandey, is Executive Director.

Pandey's dream of having a world-class mineral museum was finally realized on April 26, 2001, when the spacious and beautifully designed Gargoti Museum (Gargoti is the word for "Zeolites" in the local dialect) opened officially in Nasik, India, about 170 km northeast of Bombay. The lavish museum specializes in Indian zeolites and minerals from worldwide locations as well. The Gargoti Mineral Museum is the only privately owned mineral museum in India.

A new business, Gargoti Indian Minerals Ltd., was established on March 23, 2004. Pandey plans to extend the Gargoti brand name to cover gemstones, lapidary materials, and crystal-healing supplies, blending an appreciation of mineral crystals with India's ancient heritage. Gargoti Indian Minerals Ltd. is also building a spectacular new Gargoti mineral and fossil museum in Shirdi, India's second most-visited religious destination. Entertaining and educational natural history exhibits will be presented, so that visitors can explore the treasures of the earth. A complete restored dinosaur skeleton will also be exhibited for the first time in India. Like the pre-existing Gargoti Museum in Nasik, the new Museum will have thematic exhibits as well as displays of aesthetic and beautiful mineral specimens portraying the vivid beauty, versatility and vastness of the earth and the universe. The objective of the new museum is to promote and explore the field of geology, to help educate the people of India in the field of earth science, to boost the Indian economy by tapping unexplored mineral treasures, to create employment in rural areas, and to employ geologists and facilitate and finance important research work in the country by providing a well equipped laboratory, library and research and development facility on the premises. An auditorium, food court, shopping mall and helipad will complete the complex.

A tour of the Gargoti Museum in Nasik, and a look at plans for the new museum in Shirdi can be seen on Pandey's website,
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WILSON, Wendell E. (2019)
Mineralogical Record
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The Mineralogical Record - K. C. Pandey K. C. Pandey
The Mineralogical Record - K. C. Pandey 50 x 84 mm,
The check-box label of Superb Minerals India, resembling those of Rock Currier's Jewel Tunnel Imports.
The Mineralogical Record - K. C. Pandey 50 x 84 mm,
The reverse side of the above label.
The Mineralogical Record - K. C. Pandey Pandey's Gargoti Museun in Nasik, India
The Mineralogical Record - K. C. Pandey Interior entryway of Pandey's Gargoti Museum in Nask, India, leading past display cases of zeolites to a large statue of "Mother India."
The Mineralogical Record - K. C. Pandey Architect's rendering of the new Gargoti mineral and fossil museum in Shirdi, India (now under construction).
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