The lakes of India
From the valley of Kashmir to the southern cities like Chennai, a number of cities in India are termed as “city of lakes”.
Variety of lakes in India
Different parts of the country has different kinds of lakes. The lakes differ from each other on basis of factors such as size and presence of water.
Lakes that have water around the whole year are termed as permanent. For example: Dal lake, Wular lake.
Most Indian lakes are permanent, however, some contain water only during the rainy season.
Some lakes have water only in the rainy season. These lakes are called as seasonal lakes. For example: Badhkal lake.
The Badkhal lake is an example of a seasonal lake.
Lakes can also be freshwater or saltwater. The Sambhar lake in Rajasthan is a saltwater lake.
It lies in the region of inland drainage, and its water is used to produce salt.
Freshwater lakes are mostly present in the Himalayas, formed when the snow in glaciers melt.
Wular lake is a classic example of this type of lakes.
Formation of Indian lakes
Indian lakes have been formed by a variety of activities.
Some lakes are the result of wind, river, and human activities.
Other lakes may be formed due to glacial action.
Most freshwater lakes have glacial origins, such as those in the Himalayas.
Oxbow lake is a U-shaped lake that forms when a wide meander of a river is cut off, creating a free-standing body of water.
Kanwar taal is an example of Oxbow lakes. These are formed when meandering rivers form cutoffs that develop into lakes. Rivers that flow in curves are said to be meandering rivers.
In coastal areas, spits and bars end up forming lagoons.
The Chilika and the Kolleru lakes are prime examples of lagoons.
Lakes can even be formed as a result of tectonic activity. For example, the Wular lake in Kashmir.
The Wular lake is also the largest freshwater lake in India.
Lakes formed due to human activities include the Guru Gobind Sagar, formed due to the Bhakra Nangal Dam project.
The value of Indian lakes
Lakes contribute greatly to the economy of a country.
Lakes also serve as great tourist spots. The Dal lake is a prime example.
Without lakes, the places like Nainital and Srinagar would not have been as beautiful as they are today!
Lakes can be used for generating energy by hydel power.
Lakes also maintain natural beauty and help influence tourism.
In rains, lakes prevent flooding, and in dry seasons, they help maintain an even flow of water.
Lakes also moderate the climate of their surroundings and help maintain a healthy river flow.
Indian lakes are of a vast variety in terms of size and other characteristics.
Lakes include permanent and seasonal lakes, and saltwater/freshwater lakes.
They can be formed as the result of glacial, human, or even tectonic activity.
Lakes are of extreme importance to the ecosystem and environment.
They help regulate climate, control flow of rivers, and attract tourism.