Nature India | Indigenus

Indus comes to India

Heavy flooding has apparently pushed Pakistan’s Indus river, bed of the great Indus valley civilisation, into Indian territory via the Rann of Kutch, according to new satellite data. Though the study is yet to be peer reviewed or published, Gujarat University researchers working on the water bodies of the west Indian state say they have found satellite data that shows the river has re-entered India and is feeding a lake near Ahmedabad.

Y. T. Jasrai, the professor who oversees the climate change programme at the School of Sciences in Gujarat University, says they are in the process of writing the manuscript and would be submitting it to a journal this month. His post-doctoral student Rohan Thakkar found streaks of blue through the Rann of Kutch while scanning satellite images. These streaks signal the entry of the river into Indian territory.

Geographical data supports the theory that the river, earlier following this very route, may have shifted course after an earthquake in 1819. Silting in the Indus river basin is also being seen as another reason that might have brought about the present change in the river’s course.

The re-entry of Indus into Gujarat is expected to benefit the water-starved Kutch and Bhal regions of the state.

It would be nice to see the study peer reviewed soon.


  1. Report this comment

    Prakash Gupte said:

    I am really surprised to know the findings of this study. It is a fact that one branch of Indus was passing through Rann of Kachchh till the 16 June 1819 earthquake and after that no branch of Indus came into Rann of Kachchh. But tail-end canal water and occasional flood water released in Indus branch inundated Vighokot-Sardarpoat areas on India Pakistan border — this is common in monsoon. There is no possibility either geomorphic or topographic indicating that water is crossing Rann and entering Gujarat mainland from river Indus. I am really surprised by what is being claimed in the study.

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    Remi de Souza said:

    Information such as this comes in tidbits. It seems there is no continued research in many different fields taking place in India, leave aside if it appears in the media for common people like me. I am not scientist but know that discoveries and inventions become vital, as they are taken up by technology, now (their authenticity apart) for ordinary man’s life.