River System of India – Indus River System - Civil Services Preparation Online! UPSC & IAS Study Material

River System of India – Indus River System

by Devender 04-Sep-21

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There is 3 prime Watershed of River Origin in India namely:

  • Himalayas and Karakoram ranges
  • Vindhya, Satpura ranges, and Chota Nagpur Plateau
  • Western Ghats
  • The rivers of India can be categorized into 4 categories on the basis of their origin which are:

  • Himalayan Rivers
  • Deccan Rivers
  • Coastal Rivers
  • Rivers of the inland Drainage basin
  • Ganga is the largest river in India followed by the Godavari. The top 5 largest rivers of India are: Ganga > Godavari > Krishna > Yamuna > Brahmaputra.


    Indus River System

    The Indus river system consists of 7 rivers namely:

  • Indus
  • Shyok
  • Jhelum
  • Chenab
  • Ravi
  • Beas
  • Satluj

  • 1 Indus

    Its ancient name is Sindhu and it originates from Bokharchu Glacier, Near Mansarovar in Tibet which is called Singi Khamban/Lion's mouth.

  • It enters India from Ladakh and flows only in J&K
  • It then enters Pakistan from the hairpin bend of Nanga Parbat
  • It finally discharges in the Arabian sea
  • Its total length is 2880 Km out of which, it flows 709 Km in India and India uses only 20 % of its water according to the India-Pak treaty of 1960.


    2 Shyok

    It originates from Rimo Glacier and is known as the river of death. It flows through Ladakh in India and it is a tributary of the Indus River.


    3 Jhelum

    Its ancient name is Vitasta and it originates from Verinag Spring in Kashmir. It flows Northward to Wular lake.

  • It is tributary of Chenab
  • It flows only in J&K
  • It cut through a gorge in Pir- Panjal range to reach Muzzafarabad (POK)

  • 4 Chenab

    Its ancient name is Akshani/Iskmati and it originates from Bara Lacha Pass in Himachal. It is known as Chandra-Bhaga in Himachal.

  • Chandra River - Water flowing south from the pass
  • Bhaga River - Water flowing north from the pass
  • It flows Northward & parallel to Pir –Panjal Range for some distance
  • It cut through a gorge in Pir – Panjal & Turns southward
  • It is the largest tributary of Indus and it flows through Himachal & J&K. There are some famous projects on this river such as -  Duhasti, Baglihar & Salal hydroelectric project


    5 Ravi

    Its ancient name is Purushni and it originates from the Kullu hills near Rohtang Pass in Himachal.

  • It is a tributary of Chenab
  • It is the smallest river among the 5 rivers
  • It flows through Indo – Pak border
  • It flows northward between Pir – Panjal & Dhauladhar Ranges and cut through the Dhauladhar range & flows southward.


    6 Beas

    Its ancient name is Vipasha and it originates from Beas Kund near Rohtang Pass, Himachal.

  • It is a tributary of Satluj
  • It is the only river that flows entirely in India
  • It flows southward and cut a deep gorge in Dhauladhar & turns west to meet Satluj near Harike (Punjab). The famous project on this river is: Pong Dam


    7 Satluj

    Its ancient name is Shatadru and it originates from Rakas lake, Tibet, near Mansarovar.

  • It enters India from Himachal at Shipki La Pass

It collects water from Ravi, Chenab, Jhelum & Beas to join Indus near Mithalkot (Pak). Some famous projects on it are: Naptha Jhakri Project & Bhakra Nangal Dam with Govind Sagar Reservoir




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