Physical Aspects of India. Physical geography of India

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South Asia has three topographic regions: a mountainous portion located in the north of India, formed by the Himalayan mountain ranges (which has some of the highest mountains in the world), Karakorum (a mountain range that stretches for 500 kilometers and lies between the Indus River in the east and the Yarkand River in the west) and Hindu Kush (second longest range of mountain range in the world, which extends for 800 kilometers west and south of the Yarkland River), all with their slopes facing towards the South; the Indo-Gangetic Plain, which corresponds to the place of greatest population concentration in India; and the Decã Plateau, in the south-central portion.

South of the mountains is the Indo-Gangetic Plain. The plain is a broad swath of relatively flat lowlands, lying between the Himalayan mountains to the north and the Narmada and Mahanadi rivers to the south. This floodplain was created by the Indus, Ganges, Brahmaputra and its tributaries, with the flow of many sediments from the Himalayas towards the sea. The Indus and its tributaries flow south and west to empty into the Arabian Sea, the Ganges and Brahmaputra and their tributaries flow south and east to empty into the Bay of Bengal. Such characteristics favor agriculture, which historically contributed to the planting of rice, close to from the banks of the rivers (planting of floodplains), and to crops such as wheat and cotton, the latter planted on land firm.

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To the south of the plain is the Deccan Plateau, a relatively flat area that lies between the Western Mountains. from Ghat, in the northwest to southeast, and the Eastern Ghat Mountains, located in the northeast to the southeast to south-west. The mountains separate the plateau from the coast and meet in the south at the tip of the triangular-shaped peninsula known as Peninsular India. The Deccan accounts for most of the territory of India.

The region's climate ranges from cool temperatures high in the mountains to a temperate climate at the foot of the mountains and on the Ganges Plain to the tropical areas of the Deccan Plateau. India is heavily influenced by the Monsoon climate, which brings alternating periods of drought and rain. Monsoon is an Arabic term meaning seasonal winds. During summer, winds blow mainly from the sea and carry moisture towards the mainland. This period is called the wet or summer monsoon. During winter, winds blow from the center of the continent to the sea and transmit drought. This period is known as the dry or winter monsoon.

This phenomenon is related to atmospheric pressure differences. In general, winds blow from a high pressure zone towards a low pressure zone. During the summer, as the continent has a specific heat lower than the ocean masses, much of the heat is reflected more quickly, which causes temperatures to warm and a low center to form. pressure. Seas and oceans, with greater specific heat, store this heat, favoring the formation of high pressure centers. During winter, the centers of high and low pressure reverse: high pressure remains on the continent and low pressure in the oceans.

Essential for agriculture, monsoon rains, when they are very intense, can aggravate social problems such as urban floods and landslides. India, like much of Southeast Asia, has areas of population concentration that are classified as “human anthills”. precarious housing and basic sanitation do not support the natural conditions of the climate, especially in July, when rainfall is larger.

The amount of rainfall varies widely from an average of less than 10 centimeters per year in the northwest to more than 200 centimeters in the northeast. These conditions of humidity and heat provide the formation of a broadleaved forest, mainly in southern India, which is located at lower latitudes, also suffering the most intense action of the sun's rays because it is an area closer to the line of the Ecuador. In the central part are found the savannas, vegetation characteristic of tropical climates that alternate between a dry season (autumn-winter) and a rainy season (spring-summer). Savannas are formed by medium-sized trees, usually dispersed among natural fields. In the stretches closer to the mountains, to the north, conifers are found - a homogeneous forest formed by pine species.

Julio César Lázaro da Silva
Brazil School Collaborator
Graduated in Geography from Universidade Estadual Paulista - UNESP
Master in Human Geography from Universidade Estadual Paulista - UNESP

Source: Brazil School -

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