4. The Indian Desert / Marusthali Region
- The Great Indian Desert or the Thar Desert lies to the northwest of the Aravalli hills.
- It is a land of undulating topography with longitudinal sand dunes and barchans (crescent-shaped dunes).
- It receives below 50 mm precipitation per year and thus has an arid climate with low vegetation cover.
- The underlying rock structure of the desert is an extension of the Peninsular plateau.
- Most of the rivers in this region are ephemeral. The Luni river flowing in the southern part of the desert empties into a dry inland basin and thus is an example of an endorheic river basin.
- Endorheic basin- Sometimes streams disappear into the ground after flowing for some distance, resulting in inland drainage by joining a lake or playa.
Question 1:Which of the following is not a feature of the Marusthali?
The Marusthali is a sandy desert with low vegetation cover and inland drainage basins. The Luni river flows through it.
5. The Coastal Plains
- India has a long coastline of about 7516.6 km.
- On the basis of the location and active geomorphological processes, it can be broadly divided into two:
The Coastal Plains of India
(a) Western Coastal Plains
- These are submerged coastal plains with broad continental shelves.
- This submergence has resulted in a narrow coastal belt and provides natural conditions for the development of ports and harbours.
- Kandla, Mazagaon, Cochin, etc. are some of the important natural ports located along the west.
- Extending from the Gujarat coast in the north to the Kerala coast in the south, the western coast may be divided into the following divisions – The Kachchh and Kathiawar coast in Gujarat, the Konkan coast in Maharashtra, Goa and Karnataka, and the Malabar coast in Kerala. The Karnataka coastal plain is also known as Kanara coast.
- The rivers here are fast-flowing and carry less sediments, thus they do not form any deltas.
- The Malabar coast has got certain distinguishing features in the form of ‘Kayals’(backwaters), which are used for fishing, inland navigation and also due to its special attraction for tourists.
(b) Eastern Coastal Plains
- These are emergent coast plains.
- The Eastern coastal plain is broader than the Western coastal plain.
- They have well-developed deltas that are formed by the rivers flowing eastward into the Bay of Bengal.
- Example: deltas of the Mahanadi, the Godavari, the Krishna and the Kaveri.
- It has less number of ports and harbours because of its emergent nature.
- The continental shelf here is narrow.
Question 2:Which of the following is/are physical features of the Western Coastal Plains of India?
Western Coastal plains are narrow and have broad continental shelves. They generally don't have deltas and the rivers are fast slowing and small
6. The Islands
There are two major island groups in India :
(a) In the Bay of Bengal
- It includes the Andaman and Nicobar Islands.
- These island groups consist of about 572 islands/islets. These are situated roughly between 6°N - 14°N and 92°E - 94°E.
- The entire group of islands is divided into two broad categories:
(i) The Andaman in the North
(ii) The Nicobar in the South
They are separated by a water body called the Ten-degree channel.
- These islands are believed to be an elevated portion of submarine mountains.
- Some smaller islands are volcanic in origin. Barren island, the only active volcano in India is also situated in the Nicobar islands.
- Baratang island is the only place in India with mud volcanoes.
- The coastal line has some coral deposits, and beaches.
- These islands receive convectional rainfall and have an equatorial type of vegetation.
(b) In the Arabian sea
- These Islands include Lakshadweep Islands.
- These are scattered between 8°N-12°N and 71°E -74°E longitude and are located at a distance of 280 km-480 km off the coast of Kerala.
- The entire island group is built of coral deposits.
- There are approximately 36 islands of which 11 are inhabited.
- Largest Island: Minicoy (453 sq. km. Area).
- The entire group of islands is broadly divided by the Ten-degree channel.
- North of the Ten-degree channel is the Amini Island group and to the south is the Cannanore Island group.
- The Islands of this archipelago have storm beaches consisting of unconsolidated pebbles, shingles, cobbles and boulders.
Question 3:Consider the following statements
1. Along with the Northern plain, coastal plains also form one of the physiographic divisions of India.
2. Islands of India do not form part of physiographic divisions of India.
Select the correct answer from the following codes:
Based on these macro variations, India can be divided into the following physiographic divisions:
(i) The Northern and North eastern Mountains
(ii) The Northern Plain
(iii) The Peninsular Plateau
(iv) The Indian Desert
(v) The Coastal Plains
(vi) The Islands.
1) What is physiography? What are the physiographic divisions of India? (250 words)
How to approach
- Intro- Define physiography and draw the map of India with the physical divisions.
- Body- Explain the divisions in detail separately.
- Conclusion- Two sentences about the significance of such geographical diversity.