The basis of the natural regions of India is its three physical divisions as will be clear from the information given below:
(1) Eastern Himalayan Region
Eastern Himalayan Region includes the mountainous part of Assam, Darjeeling area in West Bengal and Nepal Valley. Heavy down pour is the rule and coniferous forests are found. Tea and rice are cultivated on slopes.
(2) Western Himalayan Region
Western Himalayan Region includes Kashmir and Himachal Pradesh. Due to scarcity of rainfall, thick forests are not found. Pine and Deodar are the chief varieties occurring here. Rice, tea, saffron and fruits are the main crops. Silkworm-rearing and saw milling are other occupations. Population is very sparse. Handicrafts are of great importance. Srinagar, Mandy and Simla are the main towns. Hydro- electricity is the main source of power and the region is said to be rich in minerals.
(3) Eastern sub-montage Region
Eastern sub-montage region is less than five thousand feet in height and lies between the Himalayas and the plain of the Ganges. Teri and low hills form the topography. Tall grass on the marshy Teri with Sal forests on hills is the main natural vegetation. Rice and sugar cane are the main cultivated crops. Tea and jute are common in the Jalpaiguri region of West Bengal.
(4) Western sub-montage Region
Western sub-montage region consists of Diwali’s and lower Himalayas. Rainfall is meagre. Dry thorny bushes and bamboos grow on lower hills, while pine is the main tree on heights. Pine is the main source of Turpentine oil. Wheat, maize, gram and millets are the main cultivated crops. Hardwar is the main town and in this region lays the headworks of most of the canals of U.P. and Punjab.
(5) North-eastern hilly tract
North-eastern hilly tract include Patoka, Naga and Lucia hills of Assam besides the hard plateau remnants of Agro, Khaki and Juanita. 6000 feet in height, these hills have a population density of 50 people per square mile. These hills receive very heavy rainfall and the region of highest rainfall, Cherapunji lies here. Tropical evergreen forests grow wild and Sal, bamboo and cane are the most important products. Prime tie agriculture is practiced and tea and rice are grown. The region is inhabited by wild tribes and the means of transport are poor. Coal, lime stone and hide power are yeast to be developed. Shilling is its main town.
(6) Brahmaputra Valley
Brahmaputra Valley covers most of Assam. It runs like a corridor 500 miles long and 50 miles broad. Its climate is hot and moist, while the soil is fertile.
Main crops: Tea, rice, jute, oil seeds, tobacco and cotton.
Main minerals: Oil in north-east and coal near Mecum.
Main industries: Saw-milling, match-making and silk reeling. Tea factories are in every garden.
Main towns: Dibrugrah – Oil refinery; Dhobi-Matches; Sibasagar.
Galahad and Johan – Silk weaving.
(7) Lower Ganges Valley
Lower Ganges Valley spreads over an area of 90,000 square miles in West Bengal and Bangladesh and an absolutely level country, with Sundarbans at the delta end.
Main occupations: Agriculture and fishing
Main Crops: Rice, jute, tobacco, sugarcane and oilseeds.
Main minerals: Coal, iron-ore, China clay.
Main industries: Jute, paper, glass, iron and steel, engineering and chemicals.
Main towns: Steel centres – Cultic, Burnout, Blur and Durgapur.
Engineering centres: Calcutta, Chittaranjan, Sasol.
Textile centres: Howrah, Srirampur and Calcutta.
Paper centres: Titaghar, Ranging, Napata, Kakinada.
Jute manufacturers: Hooghly region.
The region is highly industrialized and densely populated.
(8) Middle Ganges Valley
Middle Ganges Valley includes North Bihar and Eastern Uttar Pradesh. It is made of the flood plains of the Ganges and its tributaries – Kisi, Gander, Hagar, Son. The region has high temperature and sufficient rainfall throughout the year. Main occupation is agriculture and the area is densely populated.
Main crops: Rice, sugarcane, oilseeds, jute, maize, wheat, tobacco and indigo.
Main industry: Sugar, cement, silk textiles and utensil manufacture.
Main towns: Allahabad, Varanasi, Gorakhpur, Patna, Bhagalpur, Mangy, Darbhanga.
Main flood control schemes: Ribald dam, Kisi, Son and Gander.
(9) Upper Ganges Valley
Upper Ganges Valley includes the whole of U.P., west of Allahabad. The Ganges and its tributaries Yamuna, Rāmgangā, Gomati, Hagar, Gander and Shard drain this region. The land is made of deep fertile lame. Rainfall decreases as we move from east to west. Extremes of temperature are the rule. A network of canals irrigates the region and the population is very dense -700 persons per square mile. The means of transport and communication are also highly developed.
Main crops: Wheat, barley, sugarcane, rice, cotton, millets and oil seeds.
Main mineral: Nil
Main industries: Sugar, cotton textiles, glass. Paper, vegetable oil, leather goods, furniture, matches, sports goods.
Main towns: Lucknow, Kanpur, Agra, Aligarh, Saharanpur, Modinagar, Meerut, Ghaziabad.
(10) Sutlej Valley
Sutlej Valley includes east Punjab and Delhi. It consists of three parts:
(a) Sir hind plain lying between Sutlej and Yamuna.
(b) Doab of Jullundur which is surrounded by Sutlej and Beas.
(c) Bari-Doab which is surrounded by Beas and Ravi.
This region is very fertile but there is very little rainfall. Therefore, irrigation is very necessary. Agriculture is the main occupation of the people. Animal husbandry is also very important.
Main crops: Wheat, gram, Jawed-Baja, maize, sugarcane and cotton.
Minerals: Poorness in minerals and sources of power, Hydel development is of great importance.
Main industries: (i) Woolen, cotton and silk textiles at Amritsar, Ludhiana, Britani and Phagwara and Delhi, (ii) Paper, utensils and sugar manufacture at Jagadhari. (iii) Glass and chemicals at Tambala and Amritsar. (iv) Engineering industry at Balata, Gurdaspur, Jullundur, Ludhiana, Tambala, Amritsar, and Delhi.
Other industries: Cement, biscuit, lanterns. Cycles, sewing machines etc.
The region is very well served by roads, railways and airways.
(11) Kathiawar-Gujarat region is low land. Hardly 1000 feet above sea level. Small hillocks lie scattered all round the level plain. Dry in the north and sufficiently wet in the south, its natural vegetation is thorny shrub and thick forest.
Main occupations: Agriculture and animal husbandry.
Main crops: Cotton, millets.
Main industries: Cotton and silk textiles at Ahmedabad and Surat, woolen textiles at Jamnagar, chemical works at Baroda. Cement factories at Okra, Veradale, Kandahar.
Main ports: Okra, Candela.
(12) Konkani Region
Konkani region consists of the northern part of the western coastal plain stretching from Goa to Surat. Hot and moist climate is marked by equable temperatures due to nearness to the sea. Equatorial forests form the natural vegetation of the region. Teak and coconut are the main trees.
Main crop: Rice
Main minerals: Iron-ore and manganese in Goa.
Main industries: Cotton and woolen textiles, glassware, chemical, paper, vegetable oil and toilet.
Main towns: Bombay, Maragos, Panjabi. Means of communication are difficult.
(13) Malabar Region
Malabar region is the southern part of the western coastal plain and includes Mysore (Ma4nad) and Kerala.
Main features of climate: Hot and moist with heavy rainfall.
Main vegetation: Tropical rain forests – Teak, Rosewood, Ebony, coconut palms on the sea coasts.
Main occupation: Agriculture and fishing.
Main crops: Rice, spices, rubber.
Main minerals: Limonite, Monazite.
Main lines of communication: Roads and waterways.
Main industries: Coir, fish oil, rubber, plywood, China ware, electrical goods, chemicals, cement, sugar, artificial silk.
Main towns: Trivandrurn, Aleppo, Qulin, Cochin, Calicut, Bhatia, Kara and Maple.
(14) Karnataka Region
Karnataka region includes Madras and consists of Cauvery Delta and the hilly tract in the west. Nil irises, which rise to 8000 feet, are also included here. Average annual rainfall is about 35 inches, all of which is received from the returning monsoon in October, November and December. Teak, sandal, cinchona and rubber are the most important trees-
Main occupation: Agriculture
Main crops: Rice, cotton, groundnuts, tobacco, sugarcane, tea and coffee.
Main minerals: Mica, limestone, thorium, gypsum, lignite.
Main source of power: Hydro-electricity from Cauvery.
Main industries: Cotton textiles, leather works, cigarette manufacturing, engineering, matches.
Main towns: Coimbatore, Rammed, Tinevelley, Madras.
(15) Northern Circes
Northern Circes include Andhra Pradesh and Orissa especially the coastal plain which is made up of the Krishna, Godavari and Mahanadi delta. It has a hot and wet climate.
Main occupation: Forestry on the hill slopes, fishing on the coasts and cultivation of crops on the delta plains.
Main crops: Rice, oilseeds and spices.
Main minerals: Iron-ore, manganese, coal, bauxite.
Main industries: Steel aluminum, cement, paper, jute, silk, vegetable oil, filigree work, shipbuilding, oil refining.
Main towns: Visakhapatnam, Masulipatnam, Cuttack, Puri, Rajgangpur, Jabalpur.
(16) Main Deccan Region
Main Deccan region includes portions of Mysore, western Andhra Pradesh and Dharwar region of Maharashtra. 500 ft. to 2000 ft. above sea level, this region is the rain-shadow area and therefore receives very little rainfall.
Main occupations: Sheep-rearing and cattle-rearing on hill slopes and agriculture on plains.
Main crops: Rice, millets, sugar-cane, coconut, chilies, cardamom and oilseeds.
Main minerals: Coal, iron-ore, graphite, chromite, mica, manganese and gold.
Main source of power: Hydro-electricity.
Main industrial centres: Hyderabad, Mysore, Bhadravati, Bangalore, Kurnool, Guntur, Rajahmundry.
Main industries: Steel, cement, paper, textiles, machine tools, telephones, aero planes, toilet, Chinaware, sugar, cigarettes.
(17) Black Cotton Soil Region
Black Cotton Soil region lies in Maharashtra. This undulating land is rich in lime but it lies in a rain shadow area. The soil is, however, retentive of moisture. Agriculture is the main occupation.
Main crops: Cotton, wheat, millets and oilseeds.
Main industries: Cotton textiles, oil mills, cotton ginning, sugar, penicillin,
Main towns: Nagpur, Sholapur, Poona, Amravati.
(18) Malawi Plateau
Malawi Plateau is situated between the Ravalli’s and the Vindhyan ranges. It is on an average 1600 feet above sea level.
It includes eastern Rajasthan and western Madhya Pradesh. The climate is dry.
Main occupation: Agriculture and sheep-rearing.
Main crops: Millets, wheat, barley.
Main industries: Cotton textiles, China clay-ware, biscuits, class, diesel engines, rayon, carpets.
Main towns: Ajmer, Jaipur, Udaipur, Gwalior, Indore, Ujjain.
(19) Chhotnagpur Plateau
Chhotnagpur Plateau spreads over south Bihar, western Orissa and eastern Madhya Pradesh. 500 to 3000 feet in height, it has a rainfall of 40 inches to 80 inches per year. The hills are covered with forests populated with aboriginal tribes. Agriculture is the main occupation in the valley.
Main products: Rice, tea, Seaway grass and lac.
Main minerals: Coal, mica, manganese, limestone.
Main industries: Iron and steel, cement, aluminum and paper.
Main industrial centres : Jamshedpur, Dalmianagar, Kalyanpur, Music, Bhagalpur, Sahibganj, Bhilai, Raipur.
(20) Eastern Central Indian Plateau
Eastern Central Indian Plateau region is a triangular area bound by the valleys of Ganges, Narmada and Son. Southern U.P. and Bhopal and Vindhya Pradesh regions of Madhya Pradesh are included in it. Extreme temperature and paucity of rain fall are the rule.
Main crops: Rice in M.P. and cotton and wheat in U.P.
Main minerals: Manganese, diamonds, building stones, coal, bauxite in M.P. Nothing in U.P.
Main industries: Cement, cotton textiles, shellac.
Main centres: Jabalpur, Kati, I tarsi, Mirzapur, Jhansi. Population is very sparse.
(21) Desert region of Rajasthan
Desert region of Rajasthan includes the divisions of Jaiselmer, Bikaner, Jodhpur.
Climate: Hot and dry and sand storms are the rule.
Vegetation: Thorny bushes and cactus.
Main occupation: Sheep, horse and camel-rearing.
Main product: Wool.
Main minerals: Lignite, oil, gypsum and zinc. The Rajasthan Canal will bring a new life to this region.