(Last Updated on : 05/07/2011)
Godavari River is considered to be one of seven sacred rivers in India. This river has several pilgrim spots along its banks.
Origin of Godavari River
The Godavari River originated at the Trimbak in the district of Nasik in the Indian state of Maharashtra
. The river runs almost for a length of 1,465 kilometres. The river flows in the Eastward direction through the states of Maharashtra and joins the Bay of Bengal
in the state of Andhra Pradesh
. The main tributaries of the River Godavari are Penganga River
, Pranahita River
, Indravati River
, Manjeera, Sabari River
and Manair. The River Godavari is India`s second largest river.
Geography of Godavari River
in the state of Andhra Pradesh
, Godavari splits into two streams that widen into a large river delta, which provides an extensive navigable irrigation-canal system, the Dowleswaram Barrage
which links, the Krishna River delta to the southwest. There is another dam on the Godavari just after the source of the River at Trimbakeshwar. In the Nizamabad district
in Andhra Pradesh state, there is a multipurpose project on this sacred river called the Sriramsagar Project. The River Godavari possesses 313,000 square kilometres of drainage area and it spreads over seven states which include Maharashtra, Andhra Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh
, Orissa Karnataka
. The major towns on the bank of the Godavari are Adilabad district, Nanded district, Basara, Rajamundry, Trimbakeshwar, Kopargaon, Nashik district
Geology of Godavari River
The geology of Godavari River suggests soil with rich alluvium deposits. River Godavari is under the serious threat as a result of the growing civilization and industrialization. The river has been drying at a disturbing rate due to the pollution fashioned by the factories. The main reason behind the pollution of Godavari River is the small Nakavaggu rivulet that joins the Manjira River
, a tributary of the Godavari. Nakavaggu rivulet is not a source of life in its course.
Religious Importance of Godavari River
Godavari is a sacred river of the Hindus. The religious importance of Godavari River adheres to the existence of several pilgrimages along the river. Apart from Ganga River
and Yamuna River
, Godavari also holds the exceptional religious importance in India. Godavari is one of the sacred rivers in India. As per Indian Puranas, River Ganga should be visited by someone after visiting the River Godavari. There are several pilgrimage places on the banks of the river Godavari. The major spot of pilgrimage is Trimbakeshwar temple
, the ancient temple of Lord Shiva
. Nanded Takht Sri Hazur Sahib is one of the sacred places among the Sikhs, while Bhadrachalam Rama Temple
is the temple of Lord Rama
and many more. The Godavari has been held as a special place of pilgrimage for thousands of years. Many famous personalities like Baladeva (5000 years ago) and more of late Chaitanya
Mahaprabhu (500 years ago) took bath in her waters as an act of worship.
Ecological Importance of Godavari River
The river basin is one of the most cultivable lands in India. However, domestic pollution in this basin is the biggest polluter of the River Godavari. Ecological significance of River Godavari and its states rank the fifth position in India in the section of bio diversity. India supports about 10 percent of the world`s Biological Diversity, with just 2 percent of the worlds land area, thus making it the seventh richest bio-diversity country in the world. This difference bestows a great responsibility on the government with the responsibility to protect and conserve the rich floral, faunal and ecological diversity of Godavari river basin. The tributaries of River Godavari are responsible for the supply of water in the states of Andhra Pradesh, Maharashtra and Chhattisgarh.
There are several major towns and cities along the River Godavari. River Godavari has been serving as the life giver and sanctifier for most of the towns in Andhra Pradesh and Maharashtra. In the state of Maharashtra, the towns of Trimbakeshwar, Nashik, Kopargaon, Paithan, Mahegaon deshmukh and Nanded are located along the River Godavari. While in the state of Andhra Pradesh, the cities and towns of Basara, Dharmapuri
, Kaleshwaram, Mancherial
, Godavarikhani, Bhadrachalam, Rajamundry, Kovvur, Tallapudi and Narsapur lie in the banks of River Godavari. After every twelve years, Pushkar Mela
, a major bathing festival is held on the banks of the river. An irrigation-canal system which links the delta of Godavari River with the delta of Krishna River in the southwest has made it one of the richest rice-growing regions in India.