IAS Gyan

Daily News Analysis

Gandaki River

9th July, 2024 Geography

Gandaki River

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Context: A 15-year-old bridge over the Gandaki River collapsed in Bihar's Saran district on 4 July, A PIL has been filed in the Supreme Court seeking directions to the Bihar government to undertake a structural audit.


About the River


  • The river Gandak originates from the north of Dhaulagisi in Tibet near Nepal border.
  • It is formed by the union of the Kali and Trisuli rivers, which rise in the Great Himalayan Range in Nepal.
  • The river Gandak, is also known as the Gandaki and Narayani River in Nepal, a left bank tributary of the Ganges in India.
  • The entry point of the river at the Indo–Nepal border is also the confluence called Triveni with rivers Pachnad and Sonha descending from Nepal.


  • The river stretches over a length of 630 kilometers, with 445 kilometers running through India and 185 kilometers in Nepal.

Drainage Basin

  • Total drainage basin area of 29,705 square kilometers.
  • The river flows through the Indian states of Bihar and Uttar Pradesh, and joins the Ganges near Patna just downstream of Hajipur.
  • The basin also contains three mountains over 8,000 m (26,000 ft), namely Dhaulagiri, Manaslu and Annapurna Massif. Dhaulagiri is the highest point of the Gandaki basin.

Major  tributaries

  • The major tributaries of the Gandak River include the Mayangadi, Bari, Trisuli, Panchand, Sarhad, Budhi Gandak.
  • There are no tributaries in the Gandak River in Indian Part, only diversions.

National Parks

  • On bank of Gandak River there is two national parks one is in Nepal-Chitwan national Park and second is in India-Bihar Valmikinagar National Park.
  • These both parks are famous for Rhinoceros and Tiger.

National Waterway

  • River Gandak (Narayani River) was declared as National Waterway (NW)-37 from Bhaisalotan Barrage to Gandak and Ganga river confluence at Hajipur along with 111 NWs in the country vide National Waterways Act, 2016.

Mythological Significance

  • The river bed in Nepal side is also full of the shaligrama, (one type of stone which means Vishnu in hindumythology).
  • The Gandaki River is mentioned in the ancient Sanskrit epic Mahabharata.
  • Ammonite fossils collected from the bed of the Gandaki River at a place close to Saligrama or Muktinath ("place of salvation") in the Mustang district of Nepal are known as shaligrams or shilas and are considered aniconic representations of Vishnu.




Q. With reference to the Himalayan rivers joining the Ganga downstream of Prayagraj from West to East, which one of the following sequences is correct? (PYQ)

A. Ghaghara – Gomati – Gandak – Kosi

B. Gomati – Ghaghara – Gandak – Kosi

C. Ghaghara – Gomati – Kosi – Gandak

D. Gomati – Ghaghara – Kosi – Gandak

Answer A