Indian Geography – River System of India

Indian Geography - States and Capitals of India

The river system of India can be classified into four groups

  1. Himalayan rivers
  2. Deccan (Peninsular) rivers
  3. Coastal rivers and
  4. Rivers of inland water drainage.


  • Most of the Indian rivers flow into the Bay of Bengal but some like Narmada, Tapti and Periyar flow into the Arabian Sea.
  • Luni, Machhu, Rupen, Saraswati,Banas and Ghagghar are examples of rivers with inland water drainage, i.e. they do not empty into the ocean but get lost into the sand.
  • 5 rivers of erstwhile Punjab are Sutlej, Ravi, Beas, Jhelum and Chenab.
  • The river also known as Dakshin Ganga is Godavari.
  • The Brahmaputra is known as Yarlung Tsangpo in Tibet and as Dihang in Arunachal Pradesh. The Brahmaputra river is known as Jomuna in Bangladesh.
  • The river known as Singi Khamban (Lion’s mouth) in Tibet is River Indus.
  • The river known as Bengal’ssorrow is River Damodar.
  • Prayag or Allahabad is believed to be the confluence (sangam) of these rivers Ganga, Yamuna and the mythical Saraswati.
  • The Ganges is also known as the Bhagirathi since King Bhagirath was responsible for bringing it from the heavens to the earth. The Bhagirathi and the Alaknanda join at Devprayag to form the Ganga. The part of the River Ganga which flows into Bangladesh is known as Padma.
  • The number of Indian rivers which have been classified as major rivers by the Government is twelve.
  • There are three Trans-Himalayan rivers which originate in the high Tibetan Plateau and cut across the mighty Himalayan ranges. Indus, Brahmaputra, and Sutlej.
  • The largest river flowing through the state of Rajasthan is the Chambal River.

Cities and Rivers

Indian City River
Delhi Yamuna
Agra Yamuna
Patna Ganga
Haridwar Ganga
Allahabad confluence of Ganga and Yamuna
Varanasi Ganga
Guwahati Brahmaputra
Kanpur Ganga
Jabalpur Narmada
Bharuch Narmada
Lucknow Gomti
Hyderabad Musi
Nasik Godavari
Srinagar Jhelum
Vijayawada Krishna
Kolkata Hooghly
Ahmedabad Sabarmati
Surat Tapti
Thiruchirapalli Cauveri
Cuttack Mahanadi
Ayodhya Saryu
Ludhiana Sutlej

Dams and Rivers

Dams Rivers
Nagarjunasagar Krishna
Pochampad Godavari
Srisailam Krishna
Sardar Sarovar Narmada
Ukai Tapti
Hirakud Mahanadi
Bhakra Nangal Sutlej
Pong (Maharana Pratap Sagar) Beas
Thein (Ranjit Sagar) Ravi
Baglihar Chenab
Chutak Suru
Panchet Damodar
Maithon Barakar
Tehri Bhagirathi
Koyna Koyna
Mettur Kaveri
Krishnaraja Sagar Kaveri
Alamatti Krishna
Mullaperiyar Periyar
Gandhisagar Chambal
Nimoo Bazgo Indus

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