What is paleochannel networks?

A channel that is no longer part of an active river system and has ceased to be a conduit of water is commonly referred to as a paleochannel. Palaeochannels are commonly occurring landforms in alluvial landscapes.

Paleochannels are parts of misfit rivers and streams representing channels abandoned by migrating rivers as they shift their courses and cut new ones.

The erstwhile Ministry of Water Resources had constituted a seven-member committee, headed by Professor K.S. Valdiya to understand the paleochannels in North-West India. The committee submitted its report in 2016. The major findings were

First, The banks of one of the misfit rivers, the Ghaggar-Hakra-Saraswati-Drishadvati, are associated with the multiplicity of paleochannels.

Second, evidence from paleochannels suggests that the mythological Saraswati River did indeed exist. River Saraswati originated from Adibadri in Himalaya to culminate in the Arabian Sea through the Runn of Kutch. It was approximately 4000 km in length.

Read more: Scientists excavate ‘Ancient River’ in Uttar Pradesh
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