(Last Updated on : 22-05-2017)
Indian Water Bodies include about 14,500 km of inland navigable waterways. Rivers form a significant part of the Indian Water Bodies. 12 of India's rivers are classified as major, with the total catchment area of over 2,528,000 square kilometers. All major rivers
of India originate from one of the 3 main group of watersheds, namely the Himalaya
and the Karakoram
ranges in northern India, Vindhya
ranges in central India and Sahyadri or Western Ghats
in western India. Apart from rivers, Indian Water Bodies also exist in the form of lakes
, straits, etc. Given below are some of the Indian Water Bodies.
Himalayan River Networks
Himalayan River Networks are snow-fed and flow throughout the year and create most of the Indian Water Bodies. The other two networks creating Indian Water Bodies are dependent on the monsoons
and shrink into rivulets during the dry season. The Himalayan Rivers
that flow westward into Pakistan are the Indus
System has a principal catchment area of about 1,100,000 square kilometers. The Ganga starts from the Gangotri
Glacier in Uttarakhand
and is one of the major Indian Water Bodies. It flows southeast, draining into the Bay of Bengal
. The Yamuna
rivers also arise in the western Himalayas and join the Ganga in the plains. The Brahmaputra
, another tributary of the Ganga
, originates in Tibet and enters India through the far-eastern state
of Arunachal Pradesh
. It proceeds westwards, unifying with the Ganga in Bangladesh. The Chambal
, another tributary of the Ganga begins from the Vindhya-Satpura watershed. The river flows towards the east. Westward-flowing rivers from this watershed are the Narmada
, which drain into the Arabian Sea
. The Indian Water Bodies that flow from east to west constitutes 10 percent of the total outflow.
The Western Ghats are the source of all Deccan Rivers
, which include the Mahanadi River through the Mahanadi River Delta
, Godavari River
, Krishna River
and Kaveri River
. All these rivers pour into the Bay of Bengal. These rivers constitute 20 percent of India's total outflow. The heavy southwest monsoon rain
s cause the Brahmaputra and other Indian Water Bodies to inflate their banks, often flood
ing the surrounding areas. Though they provide rice
, paddy farmers with a largely liable source of natural irrigation
and fertilization, such floods have killed thousands of people and displaced millions.
Lakes of India
is located in Ganderbal district
of Kashmir Valley
. Chilika Lake
can be defined as a brackish water lagoon. It is located in Puri
, Khurda and Ganjam
districts of the Indian state of Odisha
. Umiam Lake
or Barapani or Big Water is located about 15 km north of Shillong
. Other Indian Water Bodies in form of lakes include Kolleru Lake
, Loktak Lake
, Dal Lake
, Sambhar Lake
and Sasthamkotta Lake
Estuaries of India
is a tidal estuary situated near the town of Baga in the Indian state of Goa. Panvel Creek
is located close to the city of Panvel, near Mumbai
. St Inez Creek
is located in Panjim
in the Indian state of Goa
. Ennore Creek is located in Ennore
along the Coromandel Coast
of the Bay of Bengal. Some of the other Indian Water Bodies in form of estuaries are Vasai Creek
, Thekkumbhagam Estuary, Paravur Estuaries, Mahim Creek, Thane Creek
, Panvel Creek and St Inez Creek.
Gulfs in India
Major Gulfs in India include the Gulf of Cambay
, Gulf of Kutch
and the Gulf of Mannar
Gulf of Cambay is located on the Arabian Sea coast of India and borders Gujarat. Gulf of Kutch is located along the west coast of India in Gujarat. Gulf of Mannar is a part of the Laccadive Sea in the Indian Ocean
located between the southeastern tip of India and the west coast of Sri Lanka.
Bays of India
Bay of Bengal is located on the eastern side of India and is the largest bay in the world. Back Bay is located off the coast of Mumbai and its water merges with the Arabian Sea. Mahim Bay is a part of the Arabian Sea in Mumbai. Two other Indian Water Bodies in the form of Bays are Peacock Bay and Campbell Bay.
Arabian Sea is a part of the northern Indian Ocean. It is on the east that this sea is bounded by India. Arabian Sea has a maximum width of about 2,400 km (1,500 miles), surface area of about 3,862,000 square kilometers (1,491,000 square miles) and maximum depth of about 4,652 m (15,262 ft).
Indian Ocean is located south of India. It has the distinction of being the 3rd largest of the worlds oceanic divisions. This ocean has a maximum width of about 1,610 km (1,000 miles), surface area of about 70,560,000 square kilometers (27,240,000 square miles), average depth of about 3,741 m (12,274 ft) and maximum depth of about 7,906 m (25,938 ft).
Straits in India
The Palk Strait separates India from Sri Lanka. The Ten Degree Channel separates the Andamans
from the Nicobar Islands. The Eight Degree Channel dissects the Laccadive and Amindivi Islands from the Minicoy Island towards the south.
Capes in India
Important Capes in India include Cape Comorin, the southern tip of mainland India; Indira Point, the southernmost location of India; Rama's Bridge and Point Calimere.
Other Indian Water Bodies
Some of the other Indian Water Bodies are canals, ponds and springs.