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RIVER SYSTEMS OF KARNATAKA 

Click here for the Basin map

1 INTRODUCTION :  

There are seven river systems in Karnataka which with their tributaries, drain the state.  The names of these river systems and area drained by them are given below.    
 

Sl. No.

River System

Drainage Area

 

 

1000 Sq. km

Percentage

1.

Godavari

4.41

2.31

2.

Krishna

113.29

59.48

3.

Cauvery

34.27

17.99

4.

North Pennar

6.94

3.64

5.

South Pennar

4.37

2.29

6.

Palar

2.97

1.56

7.

West Flowing Rivers

24.25

12.73

 

Total

190.50

100


KRISHNA RIVER SYSTEM

          2.1 The river Krishna is an Inter-State river in Southern India.  It is the second largest river in Peninsular India, rises in the Western Ghats at an altitude of 1337 m. near Mahabaleshwar in Maharashtra State. It flows across the whole width of the peninsula, from west to east, for a length of about 1400 km, through Maharashtra, Karnataka and Andhra Pradesh. The entire catchment area of Krishna basin is 2,58,948 sq km. including the other basin states, and their catchment area are indicated below.  


Sl. No.

Name of the Basin State

Catchment area in Sq.kms

1

Maharastra

69,425

2

Karnataka

113,271

3

Andhra pradesh

76,252

Total

 2,58,948

     
The principal tributaries of Krishna in Karnataka are Ghataprabha, Malaprabha, Bhima and Tungabhadra.   All these rivers except the Malaprabha River having their catchment area both in Karnataka and Maharastra.  Brief description of these tributaries are given below:  

Sl. No.

Name of the tributary

Catchment area   in Sq.kms

Origin , Altitude  & Length

Sub-tributaries

Name of the state

1

Ghataprabha

8829

Western ghats,  884m, 283kms

Hiranyakeshi, Markandeya

Maharshatra, Karnataka

2

Malaprabha

11549

Western Ghats,  792.48m, 306kms

Bennihalla,Hirehalla, Tas nadi

Karnataka

3

Bhima

70,614

Western Ghats, 945m, 861kms

Combined waters of      Mula & Mutha Ghod, Nira,Sina

Maharastra, Karnataka

4

Tungabhadra

47,866

Western ghats at Gangamula, 1198m, 531kms

Combined waters of Tunga & Bhadra, Varada, Hagari(vedavathy)

Karnataka & Andhra Pradesh


3.0 CAUVERY RIVER SYSTEM
 : 

      
   The river Cauvery is an Inter-State river in Southern India.  It is one of the major rivers of the Peninsular flowing east and running into the Bay of Bengal. 

       
   The Cauvery rises at Talakaveri on the Brahmagiri Range of Hill in the Western Ghats, presently in the Coorg district of the State of Karnataka, at an elevation of 1.341m (4,400 ft.) above mean sea level.   The   catchment   area  of  entire  Cauvery Basin is     81,155 sq. km. including the other basin states of Cauvery River System and their drainage areas are indicated below.

Sl.No.

Name of the Basin State

Catchment area in Sq.kms

1

Karnataka

34,273

2

Kerala

2,866

3

Tamil nadu

43,868

4

Karaikkal region of Pondicherry

148

 

Total

81,155

     
 
The principal tributaries of Cauvery in Karnataka are the Harangi, the Hemavathy, the Lakshmanathirtha, the Kabini, the Shimsha, the Arkavathi and the Suvarnavathy.   All these rivers except the Kabini River, Arkavathy River and Suvarnavathy River rise and flow fully in Karnataka.  Brief description of these rivers are given below: 

                                                           

Sl. No.

Name of the tributary

Catchment area in Sq.kms.

Origin , Altitude & Length

Sub-tributaries

Name of the state

1

 Harangi

717

Pushpagiri Hills of Western ghats       1,067 metres 50 km

 -

 Karnataka

2

Hemavathy

5,410

Ballarayana Durga in Western Ghats, 1,219 metres, 245 km

  -

Karnataka

3

Kabini

7,040

Western ghats in Kerala, 2,140 metres, 230 km

Taraka,Hebballa, Nugu, Gundal

Karnataka, Kerala &  Tamiln Nadu

4

Suvarnavathy

1,787

Nasrur ghat Range,   Length 88 km.

-

Karnataka &

Tamil Nadu

5

Lakshmanathirtha

1,690

Western ghats, 1,950 metres, 131 km.

Ramathirtha

Karnataka

6

Shimsha

8,469

Tumkur district,       914 meters, 221 km.

Veeravaishnavi, kanihalla, chickkhole, Hebbahalla, Mullahalla & Kanva

Karnataka

7

Arkavathy

4351

Nandidurga 1,480 meters 161 km

Kumaudavat-hy, Manihalla & kuttehole, Vrishabhava-thy

Karnataka & Tamil Nadu

             

4.0.GODAVARI   RIVER  SYSTEM :

The river Godavari rises in the Nasik district of Maharastra about 80km from the shore of Arabian sea, at an elevation of 1067m, after flowing for about 1465km in a general south-easterly direction, through Maharastra and Andhra Pradesh, Godavari falls into the Bay of Bengal above Rajamundry. The Godavari has a drainage area of about 3,12,813 sq.kms. 

Sl.No.

Name of the Basin State

Catchment area in Sq.kms.

1

Maharastra

1,52,199

2

Madhya pradesh

26,168

3

Chhattisagarh

39,087

4

Karnataka

4,406

5

Andhra pradesh

73,201

6

Orissa

17,752

Total

3,12,813

               The principal tributaries of Godavari are the Pravara, the Purna, the Manjra, the Pranahita, the Indravathy and the Sabari. The brief description of Manjra River, having its partial catchment area in the State of Karnataka is given below.

Sl. No.

Name of the tributary

Catchment area in Sq.kms.

Origin , Altitude

Sub-tributaries

Name of the state

1

 Manjra

15,667 Sq.kms -Maharastra,                4,406 Sq.kms -Karnataka,                 10,772 Sq.kms -Andhra Pradesh

Bala ghat range of hills,  823m

 

Tirina,Karanja, Haldi,Lendi & Mannar

Maharastra, Karnataka & Andhra Pradesh

 

5.0. WEST FLOWING RIVER SYSTEM :

            The Western Ghats provides a principal geographical barrier in the path of the Arabian Sea branch of the Southwest monsoon, and is principally responsible for the heavy rainfall over the western coastal belt. The Southwest monsoon season (june to september) is the principal rainy season, over 90 % of annual rainfall is realised in this period.

            The rivers in the Western Ghats region generally originate at an elevation ranging from 400 meters to 1,600 meters above the mean sea level, close to the Western Ghats ridge. The rivers generally flow westward and meet the Arabian Sea after a short run varying from 50 kms to 300 kms.  the rivers are very steep in the upper reaches and fairly steep in the middle reaches. It is only near the sea that they have relatively flat gradients and some sort of flood plain.

            The list of west flowing rivers, their important tributaries and the states through which these are flowing are given in the following table. There are a number of free catchments, between the identified river basins, which have small streams directly draining into the Arabian Sea. These free catchments are close to the sea and are at lower elevation.

Sl.No.

Name of the tributary

Catchment area in Sq.kms.

Origin , Altitude & Length

Sub-tributaries

Name of the state

1

Mahadayi/ Mandavi

2,032

Western ghats, Belgaum district,       600meters          87 kms.

 Maderi

Karnataka,Goa

 

2

Kalinadi

4,188

Western ghats, Bidi village, 600 meters, 153 kms.

Pandhari, Tatti-halla and Nagi

Karnataka

3

Gangavalli (Bedthi)

3,574

Western ghats south Of Dharwad    700 meters, 152 kms.

-

karnataka

4

Aghanashini (Tadri)

1,330

Western ghats Near Sirsi,  500 meters   84 kms.

-

Karnataka

5

Sharavathi

3,592

Westren ghats Humacha in Shimoga district,       700 meters, 122 kms.

-

Karnataka

6

Chakra Nadi

336

East of Kodachadri in Shimoga district,       600 meters,  52 kms.

Kollur

Karnataka

7

Varahi       (Haladi)

759

Kavaledur-ga in the Shimoga district,       600 meters,  66 kms

-

Karnataka

8

Netravathy

3,222

Bellarayan-a Durga in the Dakshina Kannada, 1,000 meters, 103 kms

Gundiahole, Kumaradara and Shisiahole.

 

 

Karnataka

9

Barapole (Valapattanam)

1,867

Brahamagiri Ghat Reserve Forest in Coorg ,       900 meters, 110 kms

  -

Karnataka & Kerala

 

 

                          In addition to the above main river basins there are other independent catchment in the West Flowing River system, which are indicated as below.       

a.       Independent catchment between Sharavathi and Chakra river.

        There are numbers of independent streams joining the arabian seas.   Kollur River, Ghantihole, Venkatapur, Baindurhole, Shankargundi, Kumbarhole and Yedamavinahole are the important streams in this reach.  The entire catchment of the streams coming in this reach lies in the state of Karnataka.

            b.   Independent catchment between Varahi and Netravathi river.

        The independent catchment comprises of streams namely Swarna, Seethanadhi, Mulki river, Pavanje, Nadisalu, Gurpur,Yennehole and Madisalhole. The entire catchment of the streams coming in this reach lies in the state of Karnataka.

           c.       Independent catchment between Netravathy and Chandragiri (Payaswani) 

                        The main streams draining are Chandragiri ( payaswani) and Shiriya river.  The Chandragiri rises west of Mercara in Coorg District of Karnataka State at an elevation of about 600 Mts.  Pyayaswani River originates from Patti Ghats reserve forest in Coorg District of Karnataka at an elevation of 1350 Mts.   The two river joins together at Machipana about 15 kms upstream of their out fall point into Arabian sea near Kasaragud.  It drains catchment area of 1406 Sq kms out of which 836 Sq kms lies in Karnataka state and the balance portion in Kerala state.               

6.0 NORTH PENNAR  RIVER SYSTEM :

Sl. No.

Name of the tributary

Catchment area in Sq.kms.

 

Origin , Length

 

Sub-tributaries

Name of the state

1

Uttara Pinakini (North Pennar River )

6937

Nandi hills of Kolar, 597km

Jayamangali, Kumadavathy, Chitravathy and  papagni 

Karnataka,   Andhra Pradesh

 

 

7.0. SOUTH PENNAR RIVER SYSTEM :    

Sl. No.

Name of the tributary

Catchment area in   Sq.kms.

 

Origin

 

Sub-tributaries

Name of the state

1

South Pennar 

 4370

Nandi hills of Kolar

-

Karnataka, Tamil Nadu 

8.0 PALAR RIVER SYSTEM :

Sl. No.

Name of the tributary

Catchment area in   Sq.kms.

 

Origin

 

Sub-tributaries

Name of the state

1

Palar  

 2813 

Talagavara village in Kolar, 900 meters , 348 kms.

-

Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh Tamil Nadu 

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