India Physiography


The largest democracy in the world, the land also known as Bharat or Hindustan is unique with its incredible diversity, both culturally and physically. The second largest populous country, India is home to around 17.5 per cent of world’s population. The country, however, accounts for 2.42 per cent of the total world area.


  • India lies entirely on the Indian Plate in the northern portion of the Indo-Australian Plate.
  • The country lies to the north of the equator between
    •  8°4′ and 37°6′ North latitude and
    • 68°7′ and 97°25′ East longitude.
  • It is the seventh largest country in the world, with a total land area of 3,287,263 square kilometres (1,269,219 sq miles).
  • India measures 3,214 km (1,997 miles) from North to South and 2,993 km (1,860 mi) from East to west.
  • It has a land frontier of 15,200 km (9,445 miles) and a coastline of 7,517 km (4,671 miles).
  • India is bounded in the southwest by the Arabian Sea, in the southeast by the Bay of Bengal and by the Indian Ocean in the south.
  • Cape Comorin constitutes the southern tip of the Indian peninsula, which narrows before ending in the Indian Ocean.
  • The southernmost part of India is Indira Point in the Andaman and Nicobar Islands.
  • The Maldives, Sri Lanka and Indonesia are island nations to the south of India with Sri Lanka separated from India by a narrow channel of sea formed by Palk Strait and the Gulf of Mannar.
  • The territorial waters of India extend into the sea to a distance of 12 nautical miles (13.8 miles; 22.2 km) measured from the appropriate baseline.
  • The northern frontiers of India are defined largely by the Himalayan mountain range where its political boundaries with China, Bhutan, and Nepal lie.
  •  Its western borders with Pakistan lie in the Punjab Plain and the Thar Desert.
  • In the far northeast, the Chin Hills and Kachin Hills, deeply forested mountainous regions, separate India from Burma while its political border with Bangladesh is defined by the watershed region of the Indo-Gangetic Plain, the Khasi hills and Mizo Hills.
  • The Ganges is the longest river originating in India and forms the Indo-Gangetic Plain. The Ganges-Brahmaputra system occupies most of northern, central and eastern India, while the Deccan Plateau occupies most of southern India.
  • Along its western frontier is the Thar Desert, which is the seventh-largest desert in the world.
  • Officially, India’s highest point is K-2 at 8,611 m (28,251 ft), though it lies in Gilgit Baltistan, part of the disputed Kashmir region. Kanchanjunga in Sikkim at 8,598 m (28,209 ft) is the highest point within India’s current geographic boundaries.
  • Climate across India ranges from equatorial in the far south, to Alpine in the upper reaches of the Himalayas.
  • The country’s land is flanked by the Bay of Bengal and the Arabian Sea, along the southeast and along the southwest respectively. On the western border is situated Pakistan and in the east, Bangladesh and Burma. Along her northern boundary are Bhutan, Nepal, and Tibet and Sinkiang region of China.
  • The Gulf of Mannar and the Palk Strait separate India from Sri Lanka.
  • The Andaman and Nicobar Islands in the Bay of Bengal and Lakshadweep in the Arabian Sea are parts of the Indian Territory.



  • The Indian peninsula in the south is bounded on the west by the Arabian Sea, on the east by the Bay of Bengal and on the south by the Indian Ocean. Sri Lanka lies off the southeast coast, and the Maldives off the southwest coast. In the North, North East and North West of the subcontinent lies the Himalayan ranges. India shares borders to the northwest with Afghanistan (106 km) and Pakistan, to the north with china Nepal Bhutan and to the east with Bangladesh and Myanmar. India’s borders run a total length of 15,106.70 km (9,387 miles).
  • Its borders with Pakistan and Bangladesh were delineated according to the Radcliff Line, which was created in 1947 during Partition of India.
  • Its western border with Pakistan extends up to 3,323 km (2,065 miles), dividing the Punjab region and running along the boundaries of the Thar Desert and the Rann of Kutch.
  • Both nations delineated a Line of Control (LoC) to serve as the informal boundary between the Indian and Pakistan-administered areas of Kashmir. According to India’s claim, it shares a 106 km border with Afghanistan in northwestern Kashmir, which is under Pakistani control.
  • India’s border with Bangladesh runs 4,096.70 km (2,546 miles). There are 92 enclaves of Bangladesh on Indian soil and 106 enclaves of India are on Bangladeshi soil. The Teen Bigha Corridor is a strip of land formerly belonging to India on the West Bengal-Bangladesh border which has been leased indefinitely to Bangladesh so that it can access its Dehgram-Angalpota enclaves.
  • The Line of Actual Control (LAC) is the effective border between India and the People’s Republic of China. It traverses 4,057 km along the Indian states of Jammu and Kashmir, Uttarakhand, Himachal Pradesh, Sikkim and Arunachal Pradesh. Both nations lay claim to the Aksai Chin region of northeastern Kashmir, which fell into Chinese control during the Sino-Indian War of 1962.The border with Burma (Myanmar) extends up to 1,643 km (1,021 miles) along the southern borders of India’s northeastern states. Located amidst the Himalayan range, India’s border with Bhutan runs 699 km (434 miles). The border with Nepal runs 1,751 km (1,088 miles) along the foothills of the Himalayas in northern India. The Siliguri Corridor, narrowed sharply by the borders of Bhutan, Nepal and Bangladesh, connects peninsular India with the northeastern states.

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