Geography of India
India spreads over an area of about 3.28 million sq. km. The mainland of India extends between 8°4′ and 37°6′ N latitude and 68°7′ and 97°25′ E longitude. The Tropic of Cancer 23°30′ N divides India into almost two halves. In addition, the total length of the coastline is 7,517 kilometers. The Indian peninsula tapers southwards resulting in the division of the Indian Ocean into two water bodies – the Bay of Bengal and the Arabian Sea.
In India, there is a great diversity of landforms such as lofty mountains, deep valleys, extensive plains, Plateau and coastal Ghats, the desert and a number of islands.
Division of Indian Geography
Indian Geography is divided into two parts:
Sprawling over an area of 3,287,263 sq. km, India is a land of 29 different states, 6 union territories and 1 National capital territory (i.e., Delhi).
States and Union Territories
Rajasthan largest state in India which has an area of 3,42,239 sq. km. Furthermore, it shares its borders with Punjab, Haryana, Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, Gujarat and the Pakistani provinces of Punjab and Sindh. Goa is the smallest state of India since it has an area of 3,702 sq. km. It is located to the South-west of India.
The most populous state of India is Uttar Pradesh that lies northeast of the country. On the other hand, Gujarat which lies on the extreme West of the country is one of the most prosperous states. Jammu and Kashmir which is exceptionally beautiful is the Northernmost state in the country. The Eastern part of India comprises of Manipur, Meghalaya, Assam, Mizoram, Nagaland, Tripura and Arunachal Pradesh.
India also has seven union territories. Delhi, the capital of India, also fell in this category until 1991 (now National Capital Territory). The other union territories of the country include Chandigarh in the north, Dadra and Nagar Haveli and Daman and Diu in the west, Lakshadweep in the southwest and both Puducherry and Andaman and Nicobar Islands in the southeast of the country.
India shares its international borders with Pakistan on its West, and Nepal, China and Bhutan on its Northeast. It has both Myanmar and Bangladesh on its East. In addition, Sri Lanka lies to the South of India. Furthermore, the union territory Andaman and Nicobar Islands lie close to Thailand and Indonesia. The political boundaries of both Pakistan and Bangladesh with India are traced according to the Radcliffe Line.
The Line of Control (LoC) delineates the borders of both India and Pakistan and serves as a boundary between the administered areas of Kashmir in both the countries. In addition, McMahon Line divides India and China and runs along the states of Arunachal Pradesh, Himachal Pradesh, Uttrakhand, Jammu and Kashmir and Sikkim. Furthermore, India-Bangladesh border is one of the longest borders of the world and touches the Indian states of Assam, Meghalaya, Manipur, Tripura and Arunachal Pradesh.
India is broadly divided into following sections based on physical features (discussed this in the previous section):-
The great mountain of North
India is surrounded by water from three sides – the Arabian Sea in the west, the Bay of Bengal in the east and the Indian Ocean in the south. In addition, there are many water bodies in India in the form of rivers, canals, gulfs, backwaters, etc. India is a large reserve of rivers – big and small.
There are 12 major rivers in the country. The river Brahmaputra is a trans-boundary river. It originates in Tibet and enters India in Arunachal Pradesh. It passes through Assam before finally making its way through Bangladesh into the Bay of Bengal.
The river Ganga is the longest river in India. It is also considered the most pious river in the country. It has several tributaries including the river Yamuna, which is the only water body near the national capital – New Delhi.
River Chambal, a tributary of Yamuna, passes through Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan, and Uttar Pradesh. The other major rivers in India include Narmada River originating at Amarkantak in Madhya Pradesh, the Godavari originating at Trayambakeshwar in Maharashtra, river Krishna originating at Mahabaleshwar, river Kaveri passing through both Karnataka and Tamil Nadu and Mahanadi River flowing through Chhattisgarh and Odisha.
There are also smaller rivers in the country which include Mahi, Betwa, Penner, Kosi, Tungabhadra and several others. Gulf of Mannar, Gulf of Kutch and Gulf of Cambay are the major gulfs of the country.
Total: 13,888 km
Border countries (6): Bangladesh 4142 km, Bhutan 659 km, Burma 1468 km, China 2659 km, Nepal 1770 km, Pakistan 3190 km.
This entry contains the total length of all land boundaries and the individual lengths for each of the contiguous border countries. When available, official lengths published by national statistical agencies are used. Because surveying methods may differ, country border lengths reported by contiguous countries may differ.
The Climate of India
The climate of India is described as a monsoon type. This type of climate is found in south and Southeast Asia. However, there are variations in climatic conditions in the country itself. The coastal regions of India show the least amount of difference between the temperatures of night and day. In the interior regions, the difference in temperatures of day and night is huge.
Distribution of Rainfall
Some parts of India receive about 400 cm of rainfall annually. However, it is less than 60 cm in Rajasthan and adjoining parts of Gujarat, Haryana, and Punjab. The rest of the country receives moderate rainfall. Owing to this nature of monsoons, the annual rainfall is highly variable from year to year.