Rivers have been of fundamental importance throughout human history. Water from rivers is a basic natural resource, essential for various human activities. Therefore, riverbanks have attracted settlers from ancient times. Using rivers for irrigation, navigation and hydropower generation is of special significance — particularly to a country like India, where agriculture is the major source of livelihood of the majority of its population.
Tow major river system
The Indian rivers are divided into two major groups:
- The Himalayan rivers (North Indian rivers)
- The Peninsular rivers ( South Indian rivers)
The rivers in north India are known as Himalayan rivers. The rivers in the north are mainly from the small tributaries from Himalayan mountains hence called Himalayan rivers.
The rivers in the south are called peninsular rivers as they finally end at the peninsular region of India that is in the Arabian sea or at the Bay of Bengal.
Rivers in North India
Listed below are the rivers of North India or the Himalayan rivers:
- North Indian rivers are Indus and its tributaries Jhelum, Chenab, Ravi, Beas, Sutlej.
- The Ganga and its tributaries mainly Yamuna, Gharghara, Gandak, Ram Ganga, Ramganga, Kosi, Mahananda, Chambal.
- The Brahmaputra and its tributaries like Manas, Subarnasri, Tista, etc.
Rivers in South India
Listed below are the rivers of South India or the peninsular rivers:
- The Narmada
- The Tapi
- The Mahanadi
- The Godavari
- The Krishna
- The river Kaveri and tributaries Arkavathy, Shimsha, Hemavati, Kapila, Shimsha, Honnuhole, Amaravati, Lakshmana Kabini, Lokapavani, Bhavani, Noyyal, and Tirtha.
Now as we got to know the major North (Himalayan ) rivers and South (peninsular) rivers. Let us know the major difference between the Himalayan and Peninsular rivers.
The difference between the Himalayan and peninsular rivers are tabulated below
|The Himalayan rivers||The Peninsular rivers|
|These rivers are perennial that is they have water throughout the year.||
These rivers are seasonal.
|These rivers obtain water from rain as well as from melted snow from high mountains.||The flow of these rivers is based on rainfall.|
|These rivers have large river basin||These rivers have a smaller basin as compared with the Himalayan rivers|
|The rivers are mainly running in their youth stage||These rivers are considered as old rivers|
|Two major Himalayan rivers, the Indus and the Brahmaputra originate from the north of the mountain ranges.||Most rivers of peninsular region originate in the Western Ghats and flow towards the Bay of Bengal. Godavari and Narmada are the main river system of peninsular rivers.|
|The main source is from glaciers of the Himalayan mountain range||The main source of the river is the peninsular plateau and the central highland|
|The Himalayan rivers have long duration courses from their source to the sea.||These rivers have shorter and shallower courses as compared to Himalayan rivers.|