Which Rivers Flow Through Rift Valleys in India?

By Devyani Singh|Updated : December 28th, 2022

There are three rivers that flow through rift valleys in India, these are Tapi, Narmada, and Damodar. Rift Valleys can be defined as low-land areas that are formed by the movement of Earth's tectonic plates. It can be found on land and at sea level. They are caused by the movement of tectonic plates on land, while those on the ocean floor are a product of the spreading of the ocean floor.

Rivers that Flow through Rift Valleys in India

The two major rivers flowing through the rift valleys are the Tapi and the Narmada. Damodar River is another river that flows through the rift valley.


  • The Tapi River is a significant one in the west of the nation.
  • It has an origin in Multai, a town in Madhya Pradesh's Betul district, and is 724 km long, draining a region of 65,145 km2.
  • While the majority of its basin (79%) is located in the state of Maharashtra, only 6% of Tapi's basin is in Gujarat.


  • The western flank of the Amarkantak Plateau, at a height of approximately 1057 metres above sea level, is where the Narmada River originates.
  • It travels through the valley created by the rift between Satpura and the Vindhyan range.
  • After flowing for roughly 1312 km, it merges with the Arabian Sea to form a 27 km long estuary.
  • On this river is where the Sardar Sarovar Project is located.


  • The Chota Nagpur Plateau is the source of the down warping that created the rift valley through which the Damodar River flows.
  • The river enters the states of West Bengal and Jharkhand.
  • It enters Hoogly, a tributary of the Ganga, and is frequently referred to as the "Sorrow of Bengal."

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FAQs on Rivers flowing through Rift Valleys in India

  • There are 3 rivers in total that flow through rift valleys in India, namely Tapi, Damodar, and Narmada. These are three important rivers for our country and you can read about their characteristics by referring to the article.

  • The Great Rift Valley is the most famous rift valley on Earth that stretches from Mozambique to the Middle East. Rift valleys are defined as lowland areas that can be formed due to multiple geographical reasons such as the movement of Earth's tectonic plates.

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