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Physical Features of India Notes for UPSC Exams

SSBInsights Team
11 Nov 2017

Notes Physical Features

Along the Himalayan foothills, there is a 10 to 15 Km strip in Punjab, Haryana and Uttar Pradesh. This strip has the deposition of stones, pebbles, gravel and sand brought by the rivers. It is referred to as Bhabar.

Older alluvium is called as Bhangar and plain with newer alluvium is called Khadar

Except Sutlaj all other tributaries of Sindhu are originated in India

Devprayag is a town in Uttarakhand. It is the point where the Bhagirathi River and the Alaknanda River join to form the Ganges River. Bhagirathi is the main stream of Ganga which originates at Gaumukh at the base of Gangotri glacier. The origin of Bhagirathi is taken as origin of Ganga. Yamuna and Son rivers join Ganga on its Southern Bank. are Kosi, Ghangra and Gandak, all originating in Nepal and joining Ganga on its northern bank. Due to its frequent floods, Kosi River is known as sorrow of Bihar. Ganga flows past Farakka Barrage, built to divert more water from Ganga to Hooghly to prevent the Haldia Port from silting. However it also provides added advantages of providing drinking water for Kolkata, for irrigation and for generation of electricity. The main channel proceeds to Bangladesh as the river Padma.

In Arunacal Pradesh,Brhmaputra is known as Dihang. The Brahmaputra has the greatest volume of water of all the rivers in India

Amarkantak region, the meeting point of the Vindhyas and the Satpuras, also called Maikal Hills, is where the Narmada, Sone and Mahanadi Rivers originate. The Narmada Valley is a graben. In geology, a graben is a depressed block of land bordered by parallel faults.The lands that get formed due to movement of earth’s crust are said to be of Aeolian origin. Thus Narmada valley is of Aeolian origin.

The Western Ghats comprises of  Sahyadri, the Nilgiris, the Annamalai and the Cardamom hills. The average height of the Western Ghats goes on increasing towards south. From the Western Ghats, the Deccan Plateau gradually slopes away towards the east to the Bay of Bengal

Creek is a small stream, often a shallow or intermittent tributary to a river. Sir Creek lies between India and Pakistan in Arabian Sea along the Gujarat coast.

. The only major river in Rajastan region River Luni originates in the western slopes of the Aravali range near Ajmer. After flowing for about 495 km in a southwesterly direction in Rajasthan, the river disappears in the marshy land of Runn of Kutch.

. The Mandovi River is described as the lifeline of the state of Goa.

The northern cluster of the Andaman and Nicobar islands, a group of 204 islands, is called Andaman. The two active volcano of India are located on the Barren and Narcondam Islands of this group. This group is divided into North Andaman, Middle Andaman, South Andaman and Little Andaman. Duncan Passage lies between South Andaman and Little Andaman.

The southern cluster of 19 islands is known as Nicobar Islands. Ten Degree Channel separates this from Andaman group. Nicobar is also divided in Car Nicobar, Little Nicobar and Great nicobar. Sombiero Cannel lies between Car Nicobar and Little Nicobar.

Mountain Passes

Banihal Pass (2832 m.) is a mountain pass in the Pir Panjal Range in J&K

Changla Pass (5270 m/17,300 ft.) is a high mountain pass in Leh, J&K

Jelep La (4267 m/14,300 ft.) is a high mountain pass between India and Tibet in Sikkim.

Nathu La (at 4,310 m /14,140 ft)  is a mountain pass connecting state of Sikkim with the Tibet Autonomous Region of the People's Republic of China.. The pass, forms a part of an offshoot of the ancient Silk Road. It is one of the three open trading border posts between China and India; the other two are Shipkila in Himachal Pradesh and Lipulekh (or Lipulech) in Uttarakhand.  Sealed by India after the 1962 Sino-Indian War, Nathu La was re-opened in 2006 following numerous bilateral trade agreements

Rohtang Pass (el. 3979 m/13,051 ft), is a high mountain pass that connects the Kullu Valley with the Lahul and Spiti valleys of Himachal Pradesh.

Zojila is a high mountain pass from Srinagar to Ladakh in India through the western part of the Himalayan mountains.

Baralacha Pass At the height of 16400 feet is one of the best trekking passes of Himachal Pradesh, the Baralacha Pass.

Niti Pass is a pass in Garhwal, Uttarakhand connecting India to Tibet

Cities and Rivers

Agra                            Yamuna                                   Allahabad                    Ganga, Yamuna                     

Ahmedabad                Sabarmati                    Kolkata                                   Hooghly

Cuttak (Orissa)                        Mahanadi                    Delhi                           Yamuna

Guwahati                    Brahmaputra               Hyderabad                  Musi

Lucknow                     Gomti                          Nashik                         Godavari

Patana                         Ganaga                                    Srinagar                                   Jhelum

Surat                            Tapti                            Tiruchirapalli (TN)      Caveri

Vijay wada (AP)                     Krishna                                    Ayodhya                     Sarayu

Badrinath                    Alaknanda


Indus (Sindhu)                       Zasker, Jhelum, Chenb, Ravi, Beas and Sutlej

Yamuna                     Chambal, Ken and Betwa

Ganga                         Yamuna, Son, Kosi, Ghangra and Gandhak

Bramhaputra             Raidak, Sankosh, Amochu, Lohit, Tista, Subansiri and Dikhow

Godavari                    Manjra, Penangana, Poranhira, Wardha, Waiganga, Indravati, Tal, Sabri,                                                                 Mula and Pravara.

Krishna                                  Koyna, Malaprabha, Ghataprabha, Panchganga, Dudhganga,                                                                                               Tungabhadra and Musi

Kaveri                                    Bhavani          

We are Attaching Pictures for Better Understanding

1 Indian Subcontinents


2. India and Srilanka


3 Physical Division 


4. Kashmir Ranges

951405.jpg5 Poorvanchal44264.jpg6 north-east266265.gif7 Rivers of Northern Plains928404.jpg8 Indian Peninsula690648.gif9 India rivers650877.gif9 Mahanadi and Brahmani rivers618267.jpg11 india-rivers-map452154.jpg12 Godavari-river-map536638.gif13 krishna-river-map619924.gif14 physical-map Gujarat2473.gif15 Sir-Creek-433865.png16 andaman-nicobar-island603739.jpg17 lakshdweep813306.jpgManas-sankosh-tista-ganga 263120.jpg

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