Indian’s were the first in the world to worship nature as god. Nature and each of its creations are worshiped and the importance of nature was well recognized by Indians from the time immemorial. And that’s why I suppose to think that the nature also has done a lot to Indians in return. India is well blessed by nature.
India is likely to be described as a subcontinent most often. The reason is India has all types of environment within her. A mountain, plateau, plain, dessert, ocean or whatever it might be, India has everything with her. And each of it has its own significance. India has a well scheduled season and a pleasant weather condition. Everything here is adequate. India has adequate rainfall, temperature and everything. It is hard to find a country which has all these pleasures. She never experiences a rainfall or temperature that deviates away from the moderate. She has never met a worst disaster before the 2001 earthquake at Gujarat.
The Natural Infrastructure:
Let me start from the monster barrier at the north, obviously the Himalayas. The breath taking height of the great Himalayan range prevents India not only from the neighbors but also from the dry arctic winds that could freeze everything in its track. While these winds form a major inconvenience in the north and eastern part of Asia, it could not affect the life at India anyway. The Himalayan vegetation provides us a variety of products with medicinal value. Another important role of the Himalayan range is to block the south west monsoon winds from the Indian Ocean and provide rainfall for the shadow regions. This range is the main source of the holy perennial rivers like the Ganges and Brahmaputra. The glaciers in this range also serve as the source of many other rivers that flow through the neighboring countries. Some animal species found at Himalayas are rare and are found only here and thus Himalayan ranges act as a natural biosphere reserve, in simple words a guardian. Cherrapunji in the state of Megalaya is present in this range and it receives the world’s highest annual rainfall. The annual rainfall recorded here is about 11,777 mm.
The holy Ganges and its fertile plain cannot be ignored here. The fertile Ganga plain has been a spot of major migration since ancient days. The Ganga plain contributes a lot for the wheat, rice and jute cultivation.
The Deccan plateau which forms the major portion of central India is a wonderful architectural design of nature which regulates the flow of water eastwards to the Bay of Bengal. The plateau is fertile enough to promote rich cultivation throughout the region.
It is worth mentioning about the Western Ghats in the west coast. It consists of very high ranges of mountains. These coastal regions have a special character; unlike other normal coastal regions most of these regions are having steep shore. These steep shores and the mountain ranges followed by them prevent major destructions due to a sudden tide or tsunami. Tsunami’s have drastic effects on shallow shores only. The sudden rock belt in deep shore region reduces the velocity of the waves during a tsunami. These regions also record maximum rainfall in India. The tall mountain ranges block the dark clouds and force them to pour within the ranges itself and this is the source of water in the western region. They are rich in vegetation. The hill stations present here are also major spots of tourist attraction from all over the world.
Now, as we make our attention towards the Eastern Ghats, they are not continuous as Western Ghats and thus paying way for the rivers that emerge in the Western Ghats and descend through the rain shadow region, Deccan plateau and pour into the Bay of Bengal. This also reduces the flood damages in those regions. Though these rain shadow region receive only moderate rainfall the water that descend from the Western Ghats satisfy the requirements of these regions, if properly shared. However nature has given two more opportunities, they are the Thalghat and the Palghat. These two Ghats responsibly provide some rainfall in the east during south east monsoon.
Though the eastern coast lines are not as steep as the west coast and are shallow in nature, the southern parts of the east coast are rich in coral reefs. These coral reefs are the natural barriers of tsunami and other tidal waves. The natural geographical structure of the coral reefs is they tend to be shallow for some distance and at a point they are extremely deep. One notable fact is that these coral reefs are being damaged by fisheries. It is reported that more than 60% of the reefs are already destroyed ignoring their importance. The Gulf of Mannar is still a mystery and it is hard to account how many types of species of plants and fishes are really present here. Some of the species found here cannot be found anywhere else. Presence of Sri Lanka is an added advantage for the lives at the coast of Tamilnadu. It prevents the districts nearby Rameswaram from natural disasters like Tsunamis, tidal waves, etc and promotes fisheries. It keeps the sea water warm and hence varieties of species of fishes migrate towards Gulf of Mannar. Presence of Sri Lanka is the major reason for the wave less Calm Ocean in the east coast of Tamilnadu.
The upper east coast is not as rich as east coast in the presence of coral reefs, however some reefs are found here and there. But these coastal regions have mangrove forests. The mangrove forests are dense coastal forests that have the trees and plants that resist the salt air and water. They usually grow soon and with high density. These trees are rooted firmly in to the shore land. They have the ability to reduce the velocity of the waves during a disaster like tsunami. The Sunderbans is such a mangrove forest present at the northern part of east coast and it is one of the largest biosphere reserves in the world. It serves as the home land for Bengal tigers that are worshipped by the local tribal people. It is worth mentioning that nearly 48% of these forests are also destroyed for wood and migration.
Naluvedhapathy is a village near Vedaranyam at Nagapattinam district of Tamilnadu. This district recorded a Guinness award for planting about 80,244 trees in 24 hours by a team of 300 people in October 2002. The result of this plantation reduced the damage to the village during the tsunami, 2004. This plantation program must be encouraged and spread throughout the coastal region.
Now at last let us make an eye on the Thar desert. The Thar desert extends from the river Sutlej and is surrounded by the Mt.Aravally in the east, Rann of Kutch in the south and River Indus in the west. Thar desert records a rainfall of about 0 to 250 mm per year.
Uhhh!!! I left the great Indian Ocean. I’ll finish it shortly. The world’s dangerous ocean is the Atlantic, World’s deepest is Pacific whereas the safest and silent is the Indian Ocean. I think this will do….
This variety of environment makes us self satisfied in almost every field.
India is present between two tectonic plates present in the Indian Ocean. These plates are known as Indian Plates. Earthquakes occur very rarely in these plates. The most common occurrence of earthquakes is recorded in the pacific ring of fire (ie) Countries in the Pacific Ocean. Japan has five tectonic plates near her and obviously there are more chances of tsunami there. Only three earthquakes and tsunami have been accounted as a major disaster in India since 1900.
Now tell me what would you prefer? A desert? A sonw fall? A fertile Plain? A dense forest? A safe midland? A beautiful Island? or an Erupting active volcano? We have everything. India is not only a mixture of diverse languages or communities or religion or culture but also nature. Proud to be an Indian.
Note: I have mentioned what nature has blessed us with but it is gloomy to realize that we are destroying it. Yes it is being exploited in a very very very faster rate. It is our duty to protect nature at least for the sake of our safety…