The Peninsular Plateau : the Central Highlands and the Deccan Plateau

The physical features of India:

(1) The Himalayan Mountains

(2) The Northern Plains

(3) The Peninsular Plateau

(4) The Indian Desert

(5) The Coastal Plains

(6) The Islands

The Peninsular Plateau

  • The Peninsular plateau is a tableland composed of the old crystalline, igneous and metamorphic rocks.

  • It was formed due to the breaking and drifting of the Gondwana land and thus, making it a part of the oldest landmass.

  • The plateau has broad and shallow valleys and rounded hills.

  • This plateau consists of two broad divisions, namely, the Central Highlands and the Deccan Plateau.

Sub – divisions of Peninsular PlateauSub – divisions of Peninsular Plateau The Central Highlands The part of the Peninsular platea

The Central Highlands

  • The part of the Peninsular plateau lying to the north of the Narmada river covering a major area of the Malwa plateau is known as the Central ‘Highlands’.

  • The eastward extensions of this plateau are locally known as the Bundelkhand.

  • The Chotanagpur plateau marks the further eastward extension, drained by the Damodar river.

Sub – divisions of Central Highlands

The Malwa Plateau:

  • Bordered by the Aravallis in the north, the Vindhyan Range in the south and the Bundelkhand Plateau in the east.

  • Two drainage systems, one towards the Arabian Sea (Narmada, and Mahi), and another towards the Bay of Bengal (Charnbal, Sind, Betwa and Ken) joining the Yamuna river.

The Bundelkhand (Vindhyachal Plateau):

  • It is bounded by the Yamuna river in the north Vindhyans in the south., the Chambal in the northwest and Panna-Ajaigarh Range in the south-east.

  • The Bundelkhand upland stretches over the districts of Banda, Hamirpur, Jalaun, Jhansi, and Lalitpur (U.P.}, and Datia, Tikamgarh, Chhatarpur and Panna (M.P.).

  • Rivers like Betwa, Dhasan and Ken have carved out steep gorges, rapids, cataracts and waterfalls.

The Chotanagpur Plateau

  • Sprawls over parts of West Bengai, Jharkhand, Chhattisgarh, Orissa and northeastern part of Andhra Pradesh.

  • It has as a series of the meso and micro plateau (Ranchi, Hazaribagh, Singhbhum, Dhanbad, Palamu, Santhai-Parganas and Purulia districts of West Bengal).

  • It composed of Archaean granite and gneiss rocks with patches of Dharwar (micaschists), the Damuda series of the Gondwana Period, and the lava flow of the Cretaceous Period.

peninsular pleteauDeccan Plateau

  • The Deccan Plateau is a triangular landmass that lies to the south of the river Narmada.

  • The Western Ghats are higher than the Eastern Ghats and their average elevation is 900– 1600 m as against 600 m of the Eastern Ghats.

  • The Eastern and the Western Ghats meet each other at the ‘Nilgiri hills.

Sub – divisions of Deccan Plateau

Western Ghats

  • Western Ghats are locally known by different names such as Sahyadri in Maharashtra, Nilgiri hills in Karnataka and Tamil Nadu and Anaimalai hills and Cardamom hills in Kerala.

  • Comparatively higher in elevation and more continuous than the Eastern Ghats.

  • Average elevation is about 1,500 m with the height increasing from north to south.

  • Anaimudi’ (2,695 m), the highest peak of Peninsular plateau is located on the Anaimalai hills of the Western Ghats.

  • Followed by Second highest ‘Dodabetta‘ (2,637 m) on the Nilgiri hills.

Eastern Ghats

  • Extends from Odisha to North of Nilgiri hills

  • Geologically, they were older than western ghats

  • Mahendragiri (1,501 metres) is the highest peak in the Eastern Ghats.

  • Shevroy Hills and the Javadi Hills are located to the southeast of the Eastern Ghats.

  • Rivers: The Mahanadi, the Godavari, the Krishna, the Kaveri, etc.

  • Important ranges: The Javadi hills, the Palconda range, the Nallamala hills, the Mahendragiri hills, etc.

Sub – divisions of Eastern ghats

  • Dandakaranya Plateau: Formed bythe parts of Chhatisgarh & Odisha. It mainly contains igneous & metamorphic rocks of Archaen period.

  • Karnataka Plateau: South of deccan lava region and consist of Bababudan hills. Mulangiri (1913 metres) is the highest peak in Baba-Budan Hills.

  • Shillong Plateau: Formed by the part of Peninsular Deccan Plateau. ‘Mawsynram‘, World’s highest rainfall receiving point is situated in this region only.

  • Telangana Plateau: Part of deccan plateau and located on north of river Krishna, Almost Telangana state. Formed by Dharwar and Cuddapah.

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