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Author: Laxman Burdak IFS (R)

Sharavati River

Sharavati (शरावती) is a river which originates and flows entirely within the state of Karnataka in India. It is one of the few westward flowing rivers of India and a major part of the river basin lies in the Western Ghats. The famous Jog Falls are formed by this river. The river itself and the region around it are rich in biodiversity and are home to many rare species of flora and fauna.



The river Sharavati originates at a place called Ambutheertha in the Thirthahalli taluk. According to a legend of the times of Ramayana, this is the place where the Hindu God Rama broke a bow to win the hand of Sita.[1]

Mention by Panini

Shara (शर) is name of a place mentioned by Panini in Ashtadhyayi under Rishyadi (ॠश्यादि) ( group. [2]

Shara (शर) is name of a place mentioned by Panini in Ashtadhyayi under Madhvadi (मध्वादि) (4.2.86) group. [3]

Sharavati (शरावती) is name of a River mentioned by Panini in Ashtadhyayi under Sharādi (शरादि) (6.3.120) group. [4]

Shara (शर) is mentioned by Panini in Ashtadhyayi. [5]

Sharavana (शरवण) is mentioned by Panini in Ashtadhyayi. [6]

Sharavati (शरावती) is mentioned by Panini in Ashtadhyayi. [7]


The total length of the river is around 128 km and it joins the Arabian Sea at Honnavar in Uttara Kannada district. On its way, the Sharavati forms the Jog Falls where the river falls from a height of 253 mts. The river is dammed at Linganamakki and the portion of the river above the dam is upstream and the remaining is downstream.

Sharavati river basin falls into two districts of Karnataka namely Uttara Kannada and Shimoga. The upstream river basin is extended to two taluks i e Hosanagar and Sagar. The entire basin has an area of 2,985.66 km2. with upstream being 1,988.99 km2. and the downstream being 996.67 km2.

Major tributaries

The major tributaries of the river are Nandihole, Haridravathi, Mavinahole, Hilkunji, Yennehole, Hurlihole, and Nagodihole.

Places of interest

  • Ramachandrapura Math: Ramachandrapura Math is a Hindu religious institution located on the banks of the river Sharavati in the town of Hosanagara in Shimoga district. One of the goals of this institution is the protection of Indian breed cattle (Bos indicus). A World Cattle Conference was organised by this institution in 2007 to promote propagation and improvement of Indian breeds of cattle.
  • Honnemaradu: Honnemaradu is an island on the reservoir formed by the Linganamakki dam. It is located in the Sagar taluk of Shimoga district. This place is good for watersports and hence attracts its enthusiasts. Some of the water sports possible here are canoeing, kayaking and wind surfing. Bird-watching enthusiasts also visit this place.
  • Jog Falls: Jog Falls is the highest waterfall in India if the single drop water fall and the volume of water is considered for height. Else, Jog Falls is the third highest water falls in India. The Sharavati river plunges 253 meters into a deep gorge here in four different segments called as Raja, Roarer, Rocket and Rani. The volume of water that reaches Jog Falls is controlled upstream by the Linganamakki dam and the falls are at their mightiest when water is released from the dam.

Visit of Ibn Battuta

Ibn Batutah (1304 – 1369) , a Moroccan explorer, arrived India in 1333-1334. In 1342 Ibn Batutah leaves Delhi on his mission to China.

From the Rajput Kingdom of Sarsatti, he visited Hansi in India, describing it as "among the most beautiful cities, the best constructed and the most populated; it is surrounded with a strong wall, and its founder is said to be one of the great infidel kings, called Tara".[8]

En route to the coast at the start of his journey to China, Ibn Battuta and his party were attacked by a group of bandits.[9] Separated from his companions, he was robbed and nearly lost his life.[10] Despite this setback, within ten days he had caught up with his group and continued on to Khambhat in the Indian state of Gujarat. From there, they sailed to Kozhikode (Calicut), where Portuguese explorer Vasco da Gama would land two centuries later. While Ibn Battuta visited a mosque on shore, a storm arose and one of the ships of his expedition sank.[11] The other ship then sailed without him only to be seized by a local Sumatran king a few months later.

Afraid to return to Delhi and be seen as a failure, he stayed for a time in southern India under the protection of Jamal-ud-Din, ruler of the small but powerful Nawayath sultanate on the banks of the Sharavathi river next to the Arabian Sea. This area is today known as Hosapattana and lies in the Honavar administrative district of Uttara Kannada. Following the overthrow of the sultanate, Ibn Battuta had no choice but to leave India. Although determined to continue his journey to China, he first took a detour to visit the Maldive Islands.

He spent nine months on the islands, much longer than he had intended. As a Chief Qadi, his skills were highly desirable in the formerly Buddhist nation that had recently converted to Islam. Half-kidnapped into staying, he became chief judge and married into the royal family of Omar I. He became embroiled in local politics and left when his strict judgments in the laissez-faire island kingdom began to chafe with its rulers. In the Rihla he mentions his dismay at the local women going about with no clothing above the waist, and the locals taking no notice when he complained.[12] From the Maldives, he carried on to Sri Lanka and visited Sri Pada and Tenavaram temple.

Jat clans

शरावती नदी

शरावती नदी (AS, p.891) ज़िला शिमोगा में स्थित अबंतीर्थ नामक स्थान से निस्सृत हुई है। कहा जाता है कि यह सरिता श्रीराम के बाण मारने से प्रकट हुई थी। प्रसिद्ध जोग प्रपात इसी नदी में है। 'अमरकोश' 1,10,34 में शरावती नामोलेख है- ‘शरावती वेत्रवती चान्द्रभगं सरस्वती’। महाभारत, भीष्मपर्व 9,20 में इसका पयोष्णी (ताप्ती), वेणा (पेन गंगा), भीमरथी (भीमा) और कावेरी के साथ वर्णन है- ‘शरावती सयोप्णीं च वेणां भीमरथीमपि, कावेरी चुलुकां दापि वाणी शतबलाभपि’। शरावती का झरना जोग प्रपात या जेरुसोप्पा शिमोगासे 62 मील दूर है। इस जगप्रसिद्ध झरने की ऊंचाई 830 फुट है।[13]

शर्करावती नदी

शर्करावती (AS, p.891): श्रीमद्भागवत 5,19,18 में दी हुई नदियों की सूची में शर्करावती उल्लिखित है- 'चन्द्रवसाताभ्रपर्णीअबटोदाकृतमालावैहायसीकावेरीवेणीपयस्विनीशर्करावर्तातुंगभद्रा।' संदर्भ में यह दक्षिण भारत की नदी (सम्भवतः शरावती) जान पड़ती है। [14]


विजयेन्द्र कुमार माथुर[15] ने लेख किया है ...अम्बु (AS, p.7) कर्नाटक राज्य के शिमोगा ज़िले में स्थित एक ऐतिहासिक स्थान है। अम्बु शरावती नदी से उद्भूत हुई है। किंवदंती है कि यहां श्रीरामचन्द्र के बाण मारने से शरावती प्रकट हुई थी। अम्बु की तीर्थ के रूप में मान्यता है।


अम्बुतीर्थ शिरावती नदी के उद्गमस्थल को कहते हैं जो कर्नाटक राज्य के शिमोगा जिले में तीर्थहाल्ली तालुक में स्थित है। विरूर-तालगुप्प लाइन पर शिमोगा स्टेशन है। यहाँ से यह स्थान 45 मील है। यहां आने के लिए समय-समय पर बसें चलती हैं। योगशाला के नाम से एक धर्मशाला है। अभिषेक सरोवर है। इससे बहती हुई नदी जोगकूप नामक स्थान पर गिरती है।[16]

जोगप्रपात– इसे जरसोपा या जोगकाल कहते हैं। विश्व के यह बड़े प्रपातों में है। शरावती नदी का जल आधे मील की चौड़ाई में 960 फुट ऊँचे से 132 फुट गहरे कुंड में गिरता है। यहाँ 4 प्रपात हैं। इनमें पहला सबसे बड़ा है। दूसरे को गरजने वाला प्रपात कहते हैं। तीसरा अग्निवाण प्रपात है। चौथा सुकुमार प्रपात बहुत सुंदर दिखता है। [17]


  1. in marriage. A brief description of Ambutheertha is provided by Padma Ramachandran (2004-07-12). "Malnad splendour"
  2. V. S. Agrawala: India as Known to Panini, 1953, p.502
  3. V. S. Agrawala: India as Known to Panini, 1953, p.505
  4. V. S. Agrawala: India as Known to Panini, 1953, p.511
  5. V. S. Agrawala: India as Known to Panini, 1953, p. 141, 214
  6. V. S. Agrawala: India as Known to Panini, 1953, p.41, 42, 214
  7. V. S. Agrawala: India as Known to Panini, 1953, p.38, 214
  8. André Wink, Al-Hind, the Slave Kings and the Islamic Conquest, 11th-13th Centuries, Volume 2 of Al-Hind: The Making of the Indo-Islamic World. The Slave Kings and the Islamic Conquest 11th-13th Centuries, (BRILL, 2002), p.229.
  9. Dunn 2005, p. 215; Gibb & Beckingham 1994, p. 777 Vol. 4
  10. Gibb & Beckingham 1994, pp. 773–782 Vol. 4; Dunn 2005, pp. 213–217
  11. Gibb & Beckingham 1994, pp. 814–815 Vol. 4
  12. Jerry Bently, Old World Encounters: Cross-Cultural Contacts and Exchanges in Pre-Modern Times (New York: Oxford University Press, 1993),126.
  13. Aitihasik Sthanavali by Vijayendra Kumar Mathur, p.891
  14. Aitihasik Sthanavali by Vijayendra Kumar Mathur, p.891
  15. Aitihasik Sthanavali by Vijayendra Kumar Mathur, p.7
  16. हिन्दूओं के तीर्थ स्थान |लेखक: सुदर्शन सिंह 'चक्र' |पृष्ठ संख्या: 175 |
  17. हिन्दूओं के तीर्थ स्थान |लेखक: सुदर्शन सिंह 'चक्र' |पृष्ठ संख्या: 175 |

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