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Why are the river plains thickly populated? | Class 6- The Earth: Our Habitat ( GEOGRAPHY), SOCIAL SCIENCE


Why are the river plains thickly populated?

( Chapter 6: Major Landforms of the Earth, Class 6- The Earth: Our Habitat ( GEOGRAPHY), SOCIAL SCIENCE)


River plains are thickly populated among three landforms namely plains, plateau, and mountains. For example, the Ganga Brahmaputra plain of India is one of the most thickly populated regions of the world.

The following factors lead to river plains thickly populated:

Water Source: 

Rivers provide a consistent source of fresh water for drinking, irrigation, and industrial purposes. It also recharges groundwater and makes it available abundant to use.  Access to water is essential for agriculture and human survival, making river plains attractive places to live.

Fertile Soil: 

River plains often have fertile alluvial soil, which is rich in nutrients due to the periodic deposition of sediment by the river. This soil is ideal for agriculture and supports high crop yields, making it ideal for farming and human settlements.


River plains provide a pleasant climate for humans.


Rivers historically served as major transportation routes, facilitating the movement of goods and people. Settlements along rivers has easier access to trade, which encouraged economic development and population growth.

Flat plain land also makes it suitable for the construction of transport networks ( such as roads and railways networks) and human settlements.

Trade and Commerce: 

Rivers are hubs of trade and commerce, promoting the growth of towns and cities. People prefer to settle near rivers to engage in trade activities, leading to the development of urban centers.

Historical cause: 

Many ancient civilizations, such as the Indus Valley in India, the Nile Valley in Egypt, and the Tigris-Euphrates in Mesopotamia, developed along river plains. These early settlements laid the foundation for modern population centers in these regions.

Ecosystem Services: 

Rivers and their surrounding areas offer various ecosystem services, such as fisheries and wildlife habitats, which can support livelihoods and enhance the quality of life for residents.

Cultural and Historical Significance: 

Rivers often hold cultural and historical significance for local communities. Settlements near rivers are often associated with cultural traditions, historical landmarks, and spiritual practices.

Geological stable:

River plains are generally free from natural hazards like earthquakes, droughts, landslides, Tsunamis, etc.

Despite these advantages, living near rivers also comes with risks, including flooding and water pollution.

In conclusion, a combination of the above reasons makes river plains thickly populated. 

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