Important Dams and Rivers

The rivers and dams of India play a vital role in the lives of the people. Rivers provide potable water, cheap transportation, electricity, and the livelihood for many people nationwide while Dams are used to produce electricity by using water which is also known as Hydroelectricity.



A dam is an impediment that stops the flow of water and results in the creation of a reservoir. The major dams in India have helped the inhabitants in a number of ways like:

  1. Providing adequate water for domestic, industry and irrigation purposes.
  2. Hydroelectric power production and river navigation.
  3. Recreation areas for fishing and boating.
  4. Reduction of floods.


List Of Major Dams in India

Bhavani Sagar damTamil NaduBhavani
Tungabhadra DamKarnatakaTungabhadra
Rihand DamUttar PradeshRihand
Maithon DamJharkhandBarakar
Koyna DamMaharashtraKoyna
Bisalpur DamRajasthanBanas
Mettur DamTamil NaduKaveri
Krishnarajasagar DamKarnatakaKaveri
Indira Sagar DamMadhya PradeshNarmada
Cheruthoni DamKeralaCheruthoni
Sardar Sarovar DamGujaratNarmada
NagarjunaSagar DamAndhra PradeshKrishna
Hirakud damOdishaMahanadi
Bhakra Nangal DamPunjabSutlej
Tehri DamUttarakhandBhagirathi

Highest Dam in India

Tehri Dam(Uttarakhand)

Height: 260 meters

Length: 575 meters

River: Bhagirathi River

Location: Uttarakhand

Year of completion:2006 (1st phase)


Longest Dam in India

Hirakud Dam (Odisha)

Total Length: 25.79 km (16.03 mi)

Length of Main Dam:4.8 km (3.0 mi)

River: Mahanadi

Location: Odisha

Year of completion:1953


Oldest Dam in India

Kallanai Dam(Tamil Nadu)

River: Kaveri

Location: Tamil Nadu

Year of completion: 100 BC –100 AD



India is contemplated as the land of rivers as there are numerous rivers flowing across the country. The rivers in India have been divided into two – Himalayan Rivers (rivers that originate from the Himalayas) and Peninsular Rivers (rivers that originate in the Peninsula). Himalayan Rivers are eternal while Peninsular Rivers are rain fed.  Some rivers are considered sacred by the Hindus, and even few are worshipped in the form of gods and goddesses.

Most of the Indian rivers flow eastwards and drain into the Bay of Bengal but there are three rivers in India that run from east to the west Narmada, Mahi and Tapti River.


List of Rivers

RiverOriginates FromFalls into
GangesGangotri GlacierBay of Bengal
BrahmaputraAngsi Glacier (Tibet)Bay of Bengal
IndusTibet, Kailash RangeArabian Sea
GodavariTriambakeshwar, MaharashtraBay of Bengal
NarmadaAmarkantak, Madhya PradeshArabian Sea
KrishnaNear Mahabaleswar, MaharashtraBay of Bengal
YamunaYamunotri GlacierGanges River
MahanadiHills of Southeastern ChhattisgarhBay of Bengal
KaveriTalakaveri, KarnatakaBay of Bengal
Tapti (Tapi)Satpura Range near Multai, Madhya PradeshArabian Sea
SutlejLake Rakshastal in TibetIndus River
ChambalVindhya Range Near Mhow, Madhya PradeshYamuna River
BeasBeas Kund, Himachal PradeshSutlej River
TungabhadraKoodli (where Tunga and Bhadra rivers meet), KarnatakaKrishna River
SabarmatiAravali Hills Near Udaipur, RajasthanGulf of Khambhat, Arabian Sea

List of Rivers with their length

RiverTotal Length (km)
Indus3180 (1114 km in India)
Brahmaputra2900 (916 km in India)