The tributaries also branch out and form several tributaries, which are the distributaries of the Bharathapuzha River. The tributaries of Thuthapuzha River are Kunthippuzha, Kanjirappuzha, Ambankadavu, and Thuppanadippuzha. The tributaries of Gayathripuzha are Mangalam, Ayalurpuzha, Vandazhippuzha, Meenkarappuzha and Chulliyar. The tributaries of Kalpathipuzha are Korayar, Varattar, Walayar and Malampuzha. The tributaries of Kannadipuzha are Palar, Aliyar and Uppar.
The Bharathapuzha River is not navigable in most parts except in small parts where it joins the sea. With a drainage basin of 6,186 square kilometers, Bharathapuzha basin is the largest river basin in Kerala. Out of the total drainage area two thirds, which is 4400 square kilometers, is in Kerala and the remaining 1786 square kilometers is in Tamil Nadu. The major towns situated on the bank of the Bharathapuzha River are Palakkad, Parli, Killikkurussimangalam, Ottappalam, Shoranur, Pattambi, Thrithala, Thiruvegappura, Kudallur, Pallipuram and Kumbidi.The Parudur village and the town of Pallipuram are situated at the meeting point of Thuta River also called Thutapuzha.
There are several dams constructed across this river of which the Malampuzha dam is the largest built across Bharathapuzha and its tributaries. Other dams constructed are Walayar dam, Mangalam dam, Pothundi dam, Meenkara dam and Chuliyar dam. These irrigation projects irrigate an area of 773 square kilometers.
The Bharathapuzha River is the backbone of Kerala.