The Indus River System

  It flows in north-west direction from its source (Glaciers of Kailas Range – Kailash range in Tibet near Lake Manasarovar) till the Nanga Parbhat Range.

  It’s length is about 2,900 km. Its total drainage area is about 1,165,000 square km [more than half of it lies in semiarid plains of Pakistan]. It is joined by Dhar River near Indo- China border.

  After entering J&K it flows between the Ladakh and the Zaskar Ranges. It flows through the regions of Ladakh, Baltistan and Gilgit.

  The gradient of the river in J&K is very gentle (about 30 cm per km).

  Average elevation at which the Indus flows through JK is about 4000 m above sea level.

  It is joined by the Zaskar River at Leh (these kind of points are important for prelims).

  Near Skardu, it is joined by the Shyok at an elevation of about 2,700 m.

  The Gilgit, Gartang, Dras, Shiger, Hunza are the other Himalayan tributaries of the Indus.

  It crosses the Himalayas (ends its mountainous journey) through a 5181 m deep gorge near Attock, lying north of the Nanga Parbat. It takes a sharp southerly bend here (syntaxial bend).

  Kabul river from Afghanistan joins Indus near Attock. Thereafter it flows through the Potwar plateau and crosses the Salt Range (South Eastern edge of Potwar Plateau).

  Some of the important tributaries below Attock include the Kurram, Toch and the Zhob- Gomal.

  Just above Mithankot, the Indus receives from Panjnad (Panchnad), the accumulated waters of the five eastern tributaries—the Jhelum, the Chenab, the Ravi, the Beas and the Satluj.

  The river empties into the Arabian Sea south of Karachi after forming a huge delta.

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