Coastal Plains in Indian Subcontinent

Coastal Plains in Indian Subcontinent

Coastal Plains in Indian Subcontinent

The coastal plains of India are located along the Arabian Sea coast in the west and along the Bay of Bengal coast in the east. On the basis of the location and active geomorphological processes, it can be broadly divided into two:

(i) the western coastal plains; this east coastal plain begins from the north with the plains formed by the Subarnarekha River to extend to the south till Kanyakumari.

(ii) the eastern coastal plains, it stretches from the Rann of Kachchh in the north to Kanyakumari in the South.

The western coastal plains are an example of submerged coastal plain. It is believed that the city of Dwaraka which was once a part of the Indian mainland situated along the west coast is submerged under water. Because of this submergence it is a narrow belt and provides natural conditions for the development of ports and harbors, Kandla, Mazagaon, JLN port Navha Sheva, Marmagao, Mangalore, Cochin, etc. are some of the important natural ports located along the west coast. Extending from the Gujarat coast in the north to the Kerala coast in the south, the west coast may be divided into following divisions – the Kachchh and Kathiawar coast in Gujarat, Konkan coast in Maharashtra, Goan coast and Malabar coast in Karnataka and Kerala respectively. The western coastal plains are narrow in the middle and get broader towards north and south. The rivers flowing through this coastal plain do not form any delta. 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. Every year the famous Nehru Trophy Vallamkali (boat race) is held in Punnamada Kayal in Kerala.

As compared to the western coastal plain, the eastern coastal plain is broader and is an example of an emergent coast. There are well-developed deltas here, formed by the rivers flowing eastward into the Bay of Bengal. These include the deltas of the Mahanadi, the Godavari, the Krishna and the Kaveri. Because of its emergent nature, it has less number of ports and harbors. The continental shelf extends up to 500 km into the sea, which makes it difficult for the development of good ports and harbors. Name some ports on the eastern coast.

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