NCERT Solutions for Class 9 Geography Chapter 2 Physical Features of India

NCERT Solutions for Class 9 Geography Chapter 2 Physical Features of India contains answers to the exercise questions given in ‘Contemporary India’. These solutions will help students for the preparation of CBSE Class 9 SST exam. All the answers are useful for exams as most of the questions are asked from the NCERT textbooks. So, students can study these solutions and score high in their exams.

Class 9 Geography Physical Features of India Questions and Answers

Question 1: Choose the right answer from the four alternatives given below.

(i) A landmass bounded by sea on three sides is referred to as

(a) Coast
(b) Island
(c) Peninsula
(d) none of the above

Answer: (c) Peninsula

(ii) Mountain ranges in the eastern part of India forming its boundary with Myanmar are collectively called as

(a) Himachal
(b) Uttarakhand
(c) Purvanchal
(d) none of the above

Answer: (c) Purvanchal

(iii) The western coastal strip, south of Goa is referred to as

(a) Coromandel
(b) Konkan
(c) Kannad
(d) Northern Circar

Answer: (b) Kannad

(iv) The highest peak in the Eastern Ghats is

(a) Anai Mudi
(b) Kanchenjunga
(c) Mahendragiri
(d) Khasi

Answer: (c) Mahendragiri

Question 2: Answer the following questions briefly.

(i) What is the bhabar?

Answer: The “Bhabar” is a narrow belt of land at the foothills of the Himalayas, about 8 to 16 km wide, lying parallel to the slopes of the Shiwaliks. It is characterised by coarse gravel, rocks, and pebbles deposited by various rivers originating from the Himalayas.

(ii) Name the three major divisions of the Himalayas from north to south.

Answer: The Great or the Inner Himalayas or the Himadri, the Middle Himalayas or the Himachal, and the Outer Himalayas or the Shivaliks.

(iii) Which plateau lies between the Aravali and the Vindhyan ranges?

Answer: The Malwa plateau lies between the Aravali and the Vindhya Ranges.

(iv) Name the island group of India having coral origin.

Answer: Lakshadweep Islands is the island group of India having coral origin

Question 3: Distinguish between

(i) Bhangar and Khadar

These are the older alluvium or old soil and form the largest part of the Northern Plains.These are newer and younger deposits of the flood plains.
Bhanger is full of calcareous deposits locally known as kankar.khadar soil is composed of fine silt and clay.
Away from the current river channels, does not get flooded annually.Close to the riverbed, part of the active floodplain that gets flooded annually.
Less suitable for intensive agriculture compared to Khadar due to low fertility.Highly suitable for intensive agriculture due to high fertility.

(ii) Western Ghats and Eastern Ghats

Western GhatsEastern Ghats
Lies parallel to the Western Coast.Lies parallel to the Eastern Coast.
They are continuous and can be crossed through passes onlyThey are discontinuous and irregular
The Western Ghats’ average elevation is 900 – 1600 metresThe Eastern Ghats average elevation is 600 metres
This range is a source of many large rivers.No big river originates from this range.  
It experiences orographic rain mostly in summer due to the summer monsoons.It receives rain both in summer and winter, especially in winter through winter monsoons.  
Soil is highly fertile.Soil is not as fertile as western ghats.  
Rice, spices, rubber and fruits like coconuts, cashew nuts etc. are grown.  Rice, ground nuts, cotton, tobacco, coconuts etc. are grown

(iii) Converging and diverging tectonic plates (Extra)

Converging Tectonic PlatesDiverging Tectonic Plates
When tectonic plates move towards each other, they are called converging plates.  When tectonic plates move away from each other, they are called diverging plates.
They collide or crumble or one of them slides under the other while moving towards each other.They do not collide or crumble while moving away from each other.
Converging plates cause folds.Diverging plates cause fractures in the crust.

Question 4: Which are the major physiographic divisions of India? Contrast the relief of the Himalayan region with that of the Peninsular plateau.

Answer: The major physiography divisions of India are:
(i) The Himalayan Mountains
(ii) The Northern Plains
(iii) The Peninsular Plateau
(iv) The Indian Desert
(v) The Coastal Plains
(vi) The Islands

The Himalayan RegionThe Peninsular Plateau
Young fold mountains made from the uplift of the strata formed by the sedimentary rocks.Created from igneous and metamorphic rocks after splitting of Gondwanaland.  
Consists of the loftiest mountains and deep valleys.Consists of broad and shallow valleys, and rounded hills.
The ranges have I-shaped and U-shaped valleys.It has horsts, rift valleys and troughs.  
It is the origin of perennial rivers.It has rainfed, seasonal rivers.  
From the point of view of geology, this region forms an unstable zone.This region forms a stable zone  

Question 5: Give an account of the Northern Plains of India.

Answer: The Northern Plains of India, stretching across Punjab, Haryana, Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, and West Bengal. They are one of the world’s largest and most fertile alluvial plains, formed by the Indus, Ganga, and Brahmaputra rivers and their tributaries. This extensive plain is known for its rich, deep alluvial soils, making it highly suitable for agriculture and thus, termed as the granary of India.

The plains are divided into distinct sections such as the Bhabar belt of pebbly foothills, the swampy Terai area, the Bhangar region with older alluvium, and the fertile Khadar lands renewed by annual floods. This expansive region stretches approximately 2,400 km from the east to the west and varies in width from 240 to 320 km, covering an area of about 7 lakh sq km across several Indian states.

The Northern Plains have been the cradle of ancient civilizations, including the Indus Valley Civilization and later, the Vedic Civilization. The region has a rich cultural heritage, with historical cities, religious sites, and festivals.

Question 6: Write short notes on the following.

(i) The Indian Desert

Answer: The Indian Desert, also known as the Thar Desert, is located in the northwestern part of the Indian subcontinent, mainly in the state of Rajasthan. It is characterized by a harsh landscape of sandy plains and dunes, covering an area of about 200,000 square km. This desert experiences very low rainfall, below 15 cm per year. It has an arid climate with low vegetation cover. The main river in this region is the Luni. The Indian Desert is known for its unique ecosystem, supporting a variety of flora and fauna adapted to the desert climate.

(ii) The Central Highlands

Answer: The Central Highlands of India form part of the northern section of the Peninsular Plateau. The part of the Peninsular plateau lying to the north of the Narmada river, covering a major area of the Malwa plateau, is known as the Central Highlands. The Central Highlands are characterized by a varied topography that includes rolling hills, extensive plateaus, and river valleys. The Central Highlands are known for their agricultural productivity, particularly in pulses and a variety of crops suited to the region’s climate. This area also has historical significance, with many forts, temples, and archaeological sites.

(iii) The Island groups of India

Answer: India has 2 main island groups, namely Lakshadweep and Andaman and Nicobar island. The Lakshadweep consists of many small islands located opposite the Kerala coast in the Arabian Sea. The islands of this group are formed of coral deposits called ‘atolls’ in Malayalam which refer to their ring or ‘horseshoe’ shape. The Andaman and Nicobar Islands, on the other hand, are larger in size. They are more in number and more widely scattered. There are about 200 islands in the Andaman group and 19 islands in the Nicobar group.


India has two major groups of islands: the Lakshadweep Islands in the Arabian Sea and the Andaman and Nicobar Islands in the Bay of Bengal.

Lakshadweep Islands: Lakshadweep group of islands is composed of small coral islands. Earlier they were known as Laccadive, Minicoy and Amindive. In 1973, these were re-named as Lakshadweep. It covers a small area of 32 sq km. Kavaratti Island is the administrative headquarters of Lakshadweep. This island group has a great diversity of flora and fauna. The Pitti island, which is uninhabited, has a bird sanctuary.

Andaman and Nicobar Islands: Situated in the Bay of Bengal, the Andaman and Nicobar Islands are a group of over 300 islands. The entire group of islands is divided into two broad categories – The Andaman in the north and the Nicobar in the south. It is believed that these islands are an elevated portion of submarine mountains. The islands have a strategic location near the maritime routes, adding to their significance. Port Blair is the capital and the largest city. The region’s indigenous tribes, beautiful beaches, and clear waters make it a unique destination for tourists seeking natural beauty.

Question 7: Describe how the Himalayas were formed. (Extra)

Answer: The Himalayas were formed through the collision of the Indian Plate and the Eurasian Plate, starting around 50 to 70 million years ago. Around 50 million years ago, the Indian Plate, which was part of the larger Indo-Australian Plate, began moving northwards at a relatively rapid pace (about 15 centimetres per year). Meanwhile, the Eurasian Plate, to the north, was moving southwards. As the Indian Plate moved northward, it collided with the Eurasian Plate, leading to the uplift of the Earth’s crust in this region and the formation of the Himalayan mountain range. The collision is ongoing, causing the Himalayas to continue rising and contributing to the region’s frequent seismic activity.

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