The Himalayan Rivers

  • Major Himalayan Rivers - the Indus, the Ganga, and the Brahmaputra. 
  • These are rivers. long, and are c onnected by numerous large and significant tributaries
  • A river system consists of the main river and its tributaries.

The Indus River System

  • The Indus River originates in Tibet , near Lake Mansarovar. It flows west and e nters India in Ladakh.
  • In the Kashmir region, it is joined by several tributaries, including the Zaskar, Nubra, Shyok, and Hunza.
  • The Indus River passes through Baltistan and Gilgit before emerging from the mountains at Attock.
  • The Satluj, Beas, Ravi, Chenab, and Jhelum rivers join to enter the Indus near Mithankot in Pakistan.
  • Beyond this point, the Indus flows southward until it reaches the Arabian Sea east of Karachi.
  • With a total length of 2900 kilometers , the Indus is one of the world's longest rivers.
  • A little over a third of the Indus basin is located in India Ladakh, Jammu and Kashmir, Himachal Pradesh, and Punjab and the rest is in Pakistan .

Indus Water Treaty 

  • As per the terms of the Indus Water Treaty (1960) ,. India is only permitted to u se 20% of the water that is carried by the Indus river system, 
  • This water is used for irrigation in Punjab, Haryana, and the southern and western parts of Rajasthan.


The Ganga River System

  • The Ganga's headwaters, known as the 'Bhagirathi,' are fed by the Gangotri Glacier and join the Alaknanda at Devaprayag in Uttarakhand
  • The Ganga emerges from the mountains onto the plains at Haridwar.
  • The Ganga is joined by many tributaries from the Himalayas such as the Yamuna, the Ghaghara, the Gandak, and the Kosi
  • The Yamuna River originates from the Yamunotri Glacier in the Himalayas.
  • It flows parallel to the Ganga and joins at  Allahabad.
  • The Ghaghara, Gandak, and Kosi rivers rise in the Nepal Himalayas.
  • The Chambal, Betwa, and Son are the main tributaries that flow from the peninsular uplands.
  • These originate in semi-arid areas, have shorter courses , and do not carry much water.
  • The Ganga flows eastwards till Farakka in West Bengal
  • This is the Ganga delta's northernmost point.
  • The river splits here, and the Bhagirathi-Hooghly (a distributary ) flows south to the Bay of Bengal through the deltaic plains. 
  • The mainstream, flows southwards into Bangladesh and is joined by the Brahmaputra.
  • the Ganga and the Brahmaputra flow into the Bay of Bengal. 
  • The delta formed by these rivers is known as the Sundarban Delta.
  • The length of the Ganga is over 2500 km.

The Brahmaputra River System

Different names of Brahmaputra river in different regions 

  • The Brahmaputra Rive r rises in Tibet east of Mansarovar Lake , close to the Indus and Satluj rivers' sources.
  • It runs parallel to the Himalayas to the east . When it reaches Namcha Barwa (7757 m), it makes a 'U-turn and enters India through a gorge in Arunachal Pradesh.
  • It is known as the Dihang in Assam , where it joins the Dibang, the Lohit, a nd many other tributaries to form the Brahmaputra.
  • It passes through a high-rainfall region in India and transports a large volume of water as well as a significant amount of silt .
  • In Assam , the Brahmaputra River has a braided channel that forms many riverine islands.
  • Every year during the rainy season, the river overflows   and causes widespread devastation in Assam and Bangladesh due to floods
  • The Brahmaputra is known as the Tsang Po in Tibet and Jamuna in Bangladesh .
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Davneet Singh

Davneet Singh has done his B.Tech from Indian Institute of Technology, Kanpur. He has been teaching from the past 14 years. He provides courses for Maths, Science, Social Science, Physics, Chemistry, Computer Science at Teachoo.