Journal of Geographic Information System, 2011, 3, 85-97
doi:10.436/jgis.2011.31006 Published Online January 2011 (
Copyright © 2011 SciRes. JGIS
Morphodynamic Changes of Bhagirathi River at
Murshidabad District Using Geoinformatics
Surajit Panda, Jatisankar Bandyopadhyay
1 Department of Remote sensing & G. I. S, Vidyasagar University, West Bengal, India
Received October 23, 2010; revised November 10, 2010; accepted December 2, 2010
The channel of Bhagirathi River is the branches off from the Ganga at Nurpur (lower course of the Ganga).
Bhagirathi River is one of the main rivers in Murshidabad district. Analyzing the image of the Bhagirathi
River in Murshidabad district through the year 1970, 1977, 1990, 2000 and 2006, it is found that significant
changed has been occurred in souththern part of the river and less change is found in the middle part which is
close to the Berhampore town. Toposheet of the year 1970 is also compared with the image data to observe
the change. Water discharge, soil types and transportation of sediment is the major contributing factor of
morphological changes like bar or shoal, ox-bow Lake, meander etc. Maximum erosion takes place at Dear
Balagachi and after Baidyanathpur. A cut-off has take place at Baidyanathpur in 1984 [1]. It is found from
the study that there is a possibility of natural meander cut-off at Dear Balagachi and near Majayampur. The
traditional bank protection works, concrete walls, cemented stone and brick, play a significant role in the
modification of the hydraulic aspect of the discharge values and in the interference in the water dynamics of
erosive and depositional phenomena both upstream and downstream.
Keywords: Ox-Bow Lake, Meander Cut-off, Sinuosity Index (S. I), Meander Belt, Braiding Index Etc
1. Introduction
Meandering streams are one of the few morphological
system for which an abundant historical record exists of
changes of channel pattern and associated flood plain
erosion and deposition. Despite the evidence from survey,
process measurements, image analysis floodplain stere-
ography are just the beginning to construct realistic proc-
ess models of meandering stream evolution. Here dis-
cussed the combines simulated bank erosion and channel
migration. Such simulation modeling has both practical
and theoretical utility for prediction of channel and
floodplain changes, validation of theoretical process
models, and increased understanding of the sedimen-
tological structure of fluvial deposits with implication for
groundwater flow.
The model discussed here has three major components:
(1) The model flow, bed topography, and sediment
transport in meandering streams, (2) The component is a
relationship between near-bank velocity and corre-
sponding rates of bank erosion and lateral migration and
(3) The marriage of a realistic model of meandering with
floodplain sedimentation is the novel contribution. The
objective of the study is as follows:
To investigate the morphological aspects such as
channel geometry, fluid dynamics and hydraulic
geometry of the basin area.
To study the changes of channel capacity width,
depth, meander, etc.
To study the discharge of water and sediment and
also its effect on bank erosion.
To propose the rational management for the ab-
atement of erosion and protection for river bank.
2. Background to the Study
It is found that significant changed of Bhagirathi river
bank has been occurred in southern part of the river and
less change is found in the middle part which is close to
the Berhampore town.
Meander evolution relying on alternate bars has two
deficiencies as a universal explanation for meandering.
They predict a non-meandering platform for channels
two narrow for development of alternate bars (the curva-
Copyright © 2010 SciRes. JGIS
ture-based model allows meandering under such condi-
tions). Therefore, both curvature-forced variations in
velocity and depth and alternate bars may control devel-
opment of meanders. The natural wavelengths of mean-
dering associated with the curvature forcing and alternate
bar forcing may not be same, leading to possibility of
multiple wavelength scales. In many cases migrating
alternate bars occur in meandering channels. Migrating
bars do not affect average bank erosion rates in system-
atic manners.
Another, and possibility related observations is that
alternate bars migrate freely in low amplitude sinuous
channels but can become suppressed in high-amplitude
sinuous channels, possibly reforming in very high-am-
plitude meanders. Such locking and suppression may
induce systematic variations in flow and bed topography
that is not accounted for by liberalized models and which
could affect bank migration rates. This possibility is ad-
dressed further in lated and natural meanders. The model
also is clearly inadequate in the case where the width/
depth ratio is grater enough for braiding to become im-
2.1. Objective
1) To investigate the morphological aspects such as
channel geometry, fluid dynamics and hydraulic geome-
try of the Bhagirathi river basin area.
2) To study the changes of channel capacity width,
depth, meander, etc.
3) To study the discharge of water and sediment and
also its effect on Bhagirathi river bank erosion.
4) To propose the rational management for the abate-
ment of erosion and protection for Bhagirathi river bank.
3. About Study Area
The Murshidabad district of West-Bengal is situated on
south of Ganga River. The latitudinal and longitudinal
extension of the district is 230 43'N to 240 52' N and 870
49'E to 880 44'E respectively. Bhagirathi is the Branch of
the Ganga River from Nurpur, 25 Km below Farakka,
and flowing way to the South it leaves from the district
just north of Plassey Figure 1.
The river Bhagirathi has bifurcated the triangle shaped
district and divided it into two broad geographical re-
gions of almost equal area and having a striking differ-
ence in their geology, in the agricultural and habitation
pattern and even in the religions of their inhabitants. The
general inclination of the district west of the Bhagirathi
is from north-west to south-east; but in the tract east of
Bhagirathi, the lines of drainage are somewhat irregular
as the main rivers do not uniformly takes this direction.
The tract of Bagri, lying east of Bhagirathi is covered
with recent alluvium, consisting of sandy clay and sand
along the course of the rivers, and fine silt consolidating
into clay in the flatter parts of the plain; sometimes the
areas form saucer-like depressions. A bank of stiff clay,
gravels and calcareous modules called ghuting forms, the
junction of the alluvium and higher grounds on the west
of Bhagirathi. In the north-west of the district are some
isolated clay hillocks such as channel geometry, fluid
4. Methodology
After collecting the data; the toposheet, Google earth
map and block map (district) are rectified (ERDAS IM-
AGINE 9.0). Then, the images (3-years) are registered
(ERDAS IMAGINE 9.0) with respect to toposheet.
Next, the images are subseted (ERDAS IMAGINE 9.0
and ArcGIS 9.2) to delineate the study area. After that
the Bhagirathi River is subseted from the three images
and the water body is masked from sub set images
(ERDAS IMAGINE 9.0). Next the river is digitized
from toposheet and Google map (ArcGIS 9.2). After
that, overlapping (superimposing) the all river layers and
digitized major changes (ArcGIS 9.2). On the other
hand, RS & GIS are applied to know the length by digi-
tizing the river and central line. Again, the RS & GIS are
applied through measurement scale to measure the length
of bar and to know the angle of curvature and also the
radius (ArcGIS -9.2).
4.1. Analysis of the Bhagirathi River Bank
The different sections of the analyses parts are:
Identify the changes parts of Bhagirathi River.
Various model and process analyses (Meander
geometry) for proving the shift of the river.
Possible cause of bank erosion.
Protection and Management.
5. Changes Parts of Bhagirathi River
Since the installation of the Farakka in 1975, there has
been an increase in the discharge of the river. This has
caused several cut-offs to be formed in the river Bhagi-
5.1. Cut-off at Dear-Balagachi
Dear-Balagachi is the only conspicuous meander to be
formed in the upper course of the river. At Dear-Bala-
gachi it is seen that the angle between the two tangents
Copyright © 2011 SciRes. JGIS
Figure 1. Location map of study area.
Flow chart of methodology
and the distance between the two tangents is decrease, so
there is a chance of a cut-off in near future (Figure 2).
Dear-Balagachi loop which is downstream from the
Feeder Canal outfall. The erosion near the neck of the
loop during the year 1993-1994 has been observed.
5.2. Cut-off at Baidyanathpur
The cut-off at Baidyanathpur took place during the fre-
shets of 1984, which is situated about 95 km downstream
of the Feeder Canal outfall. The river at Baidyanathpur
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Figure 2. Cut-off at Dear-Balagachi.
formed a wide loop with a very narrow neck. Severe ero-
sion took place at the neck of the loop, causing the
cut-off to take place (Figure 3). Due to the reduction in
length of the river the hydraulic gradient increases. The
velocity was very high and the same volume of water
following through the narrow neck at Baidyanathpur
reached the breaking point and produced a cut-off.
By the study of the Bhagirathi River the major change
is take place near the Majhyampur (Figure 4), Saktipur,
Baidyanathpur, and upper part of Plassey and near the
Barhampur moderate change take place.
6. Various Model and Process Analyses
6.1. Sediment Transport Model
If the sediment supplied is in excess of transport capacity
deposition occurs and vice-versa. It is important to note
that the sediment transport capacity includes only the bed
Figure 3. Cut-off at Baidyanathpur.
Figure 4. Bhagirathi river near Majhyampur.
material load and not the wash load which contributes
about 80 present of suspended load from the sources
mentioned earlier. It is this bed material load which set-
tles largely on the bed in case of the channel load washed
in. Also, a large concentration of fine material in suspen-
sion alters the transport capacities of a channel.
Total load of stream = (bed material load) + (wash load)
Bed material load = (bed load + suspended load)
The Bhagirathi draws an uncontrolled amount of se-
diment from the Ganga at Jangipur. The average trans-
port capacities of the reach at individual section for dis-
charge below the Table 1.
Here the sediment supplied is more than transport ca-
pacity, so the deposition occurs and some bars or shoal is
Near Berhampore, significant shoaling characteristics
are absent (show the Table 2 ) because the excessive load
has already deposit in previous reach. Here the river is
low sinuous (wave length is big) is called “Secondary”
Table 1. Showing average sediment transport and load ca-
Average transport capacity
Suspended load at
Jangipur tons/day
20000 3581 6616
40000 16891 24439
59000 35127 39313
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Table 2. Showing the average sediment transport capacity.
Discharge (cfs) Average transport capasity tons/day
20000 2780
40000 15000
The sediment transport capacity at Jangipur in differ-
ent year is computed shown in Table 3 using the equa-
G= aQb (3)
[2] a and b constant value.
6.2. River Width
By the measurement or river width from Jangipur to up-
per part of Plassey, (near about 1.5 km interval) it is
found the variation below the Figure 5 of river width.
The variation of river width is happened due to variation
of river bank erosion and deposition that indicate the
river bank change.
6.3. Meander Geometry
Sinuosity Index (S.I):
SI = meandering length/ straight length (4)
[3] Within the study area (Jangipur Barrage to upper part
of Plassey), the sinuous is vary from 1.49 to 1.53 (Figure
6) from 1970-2006. In this reach, the river has winding
as well as straight course when the sinuosity index is
mainly within 2, in most part of the river. This is due to
the less sinuous course of the river, mainly from Hazar-
duary to Baidyanathpur. In this part the river sinuosity
index is minimum 1.05 from Table 4. Wherever the
river has less sinuous course or the sinuosity index is
within 1.25 (Figure 6), the river is in between the
straight and regular stage.
In some places like at Dear-Balagachi, Majhyampur,
Baidyanathpur, Saktipur and upper part of Plassey area
the river has winding course and here the sinuosity index
has increased which is within 1.75 to 2.10. But the sinu-
osity index at Baidyanathpur is about 2.10 (Table 5).
This is because the river has straightened its course after
the cut-off. At Diar-Balagachi a conspicuous meander
has been formed with a wide loop. The river has found a
sinuous curve and the sinuosity index here is 4.819.
From this study it can be concluded that when sinusity
index is with in 1.25, the river is in between the straight
to the regular stage. When the sinusity index is more than
1.5, the river is in the Meander stage. When it is above
2.5 the river is in the tortuous stage.
6.4. Braided Channel
A braided channel pattern is characterized by multiple
channels wherein these channel ways are divided by bars
and islands and are always shifting within highly erod-
ible river banks. The characteristic features of braided
channel pattern include unstable bars and islands; tem-
poral changes in their (bars and islands) positions and
size and shape from one day to the other, from one
month to the other and from one season to the other.
The braided stream channel contains bars and island,
and the degree of braiding can be expressed by the reach
length that is divided by one or more islands or
bars’(chorley, et al. 1985), J. C. Brice (1964) has devised
a brading index to determine the degree of brading-
Braiding Index (Brice index) = 2ir
where, Li = Length of the islands or bars in a reach, Lr=
Length of mid way between the river bank of the chan-
From the computed, it is clearer that the bars of Bha-
girathi River are unstable, because the Braiding Index
values are not constant. It varies from 0.045507262 to
0.776291999. It is also observed that the major instabil-
ity in the year 2006, which indicate the change in behav-
ior in the river (Figure 7).
Cut-off has occurred for Ratio Value (rc/W) ranging
from 1.0 to 12.0 .Most of the cut-off occurred at (rc/W)
Table 3. Computed sediment transport capacity at Jangipur.
op Discha-rge (Q) in Cusec a Qb Sediment Discharge (G)tons/Day
16/9/1963 43746 0.00000184 7677126249 14125.9123
19/9/1964 40702 0.00000184 6583874553 12114.32918
13/9/1965 43436 0.00000184 7561711888 13913.54987
11/8/1967 40735 0.00000184 6595249733 12135.25951
31/8/1968 40319 0.00000184 6452615277 11872.81211
9/8/1995 42740 0.00000184 7305963917 13442.97361
31/8/2005 46378 0.00000184 8694499655 15997.87937
30/8/2006 43482 0.00000184 7578779294 13944.9539
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Figure 5. Width of the Bhagirathi river (1977 to 2006).
Figure 6. Sinuosity index.
value between 1 and 4 [4]. Where, Rc= Centre line radius
of bend.
W = Average width (River) (6)
In the Murshidabad district, the natural cut-off of
Bhagirathi River takes place at near Baidyanathpur
(1977-1985) and as a response oxbow lake. Now from
the figure Figure 8, It is clear that there is a chance of
Figure 7. Show braiding index.
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Table 4. Computed sinuosity index of Bhagirathi river from
1970 to 2006.
Years Channel
Length(m) SI
1970 131137.2652 87,628.95 1.496506223
1977 134457.9416 87,593.84 1.535016034
1990 132195.0939 88,036.14 1.501600224
2000 133438.3782 87,959.05 1.517051133
2006 132580.7542 87,953.67 1.507393104
Table 5. Computed sinuosity index of Bhagirathi river in
2006 at different location.
LOCATION Meandering
length (m)
length (m)
Dear-Balagachi 10244.886032,125.77 4.819369979
Hazarduary to
Baidyanathpur 23512.4947722,219.23 1.058204658
Baidyanathpur 7835.4808393,714.81 2.1092531
Majhyampur 3878.7521572,215.33 1.750870645
After Majhyam-
pur 23163.2102517,780.23 1.302750685
natural meandering cut-off at Bhagirathi River near the
Majhyampur and after some years near Birendranagar
and Dear Balagachhi. Most of the Cut-off of Bhagirathi
River has occurred for Ratio Value (rc/W) ranging from 0
to 1.0 Figure 9.
6.5. Meander Belt of Bhagirathi River
br (7)
From the above equation when Mb will be ‘0’ neck dis-
tance will be ‘0’ and Ox-Bow lake will be formed [2].
The meander Belt at Majhyampur was 294 m. in 2006,
which is gradually changed to wards “0”. So the natural
cut-off of Bhagirathi River takes place at near Ma-
jhyampur in future and a small Ox-Bow lake will be
formed Figure 10.
Where, Mb = meander Belt, rc = Centre line radius of
[5] where, w
= curvatures, W = Channel width,
The angular change in direction at the node (meander), lu
and ld = the distance to the adjacent upstream and down-
stream nodes Figure 11.
By the computing the curvature Table 6 of some
places with the help of above Equation (1), the study
showed the variation of river curvature (Table 7). The
variation of river curvature is may be due to the variation
of river bank erosion and deposition that indicate the
change of river bank pattern.
7. Possible Cause of Bank Erosion
7.1 Water Discharges
The main reason for Bhagirathi River bank erosion is due
to fluctuating water discharges from the Farakka Barrage
through the feeder canal at Jangipur Figure 12. After the
construction of Farakka barrage about 2.62 Km. (1975),
the 40000 cusec (near about) of water drainage from Fa-
rakka up stream to Bhagirathi River through the Feeder
canal (38.30 km). The high discharge (Source: CPT) of
water increase the stream power ( = wQS) and high
stream power increase the Bank erosion.
7.2. Soil Types
The Murshidabad district belongs into the zone of allu-
vial soil Figure 13. The characteristics of the soil also
have an important bearing on the extent of erosion. The
banks of Bhagirathi River have been formed by alternate
layers of silt (Fine), clay and sand Figure 14(a). Incom-
ing high velocity of water colliding with the sand parti-
cles and chemical composition of Alluvial soil like pH=
6.21, C= 0.31%, N= 0.33%, Fe2O3 = 3.92%, Al2O3=
5.8%, R2O2= 9.98%, CaO= 0.54, coarse sand 2.20%,
Fine sand 31.06% and Silt 39.00% etc [6]. Hydration
means the observation of the water. In this process water
molecule enter into the crystal of the mineral. Conse-
quently rocks gets fragile and brakes ultimately. By this
processes Hematite turns into Limonite. So the soil is
acetic and erodability.
2Fe2O3 + 3 H2O 2Fe2O3, 3H2O
Al2O3 + H2O Al (OH) 3 +H2
The soils present along the banks have pore spaces,
which gets filled up with water of river during the monsoon
months. When this water gets inside these pore spaces, the
soil particles (chemical composition) are liquefied [lique-
factions] Figure 14(b). But when the water is return back
to the river in the winter months, the soil particles are loose
and the reaches are fall, causing bank erosion.
7.2.1. Stream Pow e r
One of the most important expressions of the hydraulics
of flow in a channel is Stream Power ().
= w Q S kg/m3/s (9)
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Figure 8. Centre line radius of bend.
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Table 6. Computed curvature of Bhagirathi river at different location.
Location 1970 1977 1995 2000 2006
NEAR BIRENDRANAGAR 1.113034685 1.659209799 1.437617075 1.353941103 1.617594373
BALAGACHHI (L) 2.515306168 1.698947308 1.620270084 1.867711283 1.349637805
BALAGACHHI (R) 0.547237175 0.818645949 0.864777938 1.036722485 1.061546405
(U) 2.797150164 3.648345267 2.212639589 0.605117345 0.672352606
(L) 2.781338251 1.381316138 1.885878387 0.603339203 0.535284009
NEAR MAJHYAMPUR 0.653372071 0.871284163 1.192884455 0.890750508 2.234147625
Figure 9. Meandering cut-off.
Figure 10. Meander belt.
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Table 7. Computation of meandering cut-off.
Years Location Perimeter
(metres)=2πr Radius (rc) A. Width (metres) Ratio
Value(rc/W) Mb
NEAR BIRENDRANAGAR 4861.06298985000773.35093020341268.75612312400 2.877519296 2886
NEAR DEAR BALAGACHHI (A) 3920.56087061000623.72559305159255.03956549600 2.445603261 2328
NEAR DEAR BALAGACHHI (B) 5170.08857185000822.51409097614308.01724811700 2.670350755 3070
NEAR BAIDYANATHPUR (A) 1387.56421502000220.74885238955354.23269528600 0.623174697 824
NEAR BAIDYANATHPUR (B 4622.65387067000735.42220669750351.32416696800 2.093286702 2745
NEAR MAJHYAMPUR 3818.87259157000607.54791229523282.55716887800 2.150176953 2267
NEAR BIRENDRANAGAR 4584.96487263000729.42622973659284.74352479600 2.561695583 2722
NEAR DEAR BALAGACHHI (A) 3029.25673251000481.92720744477263.63832099500 1.827986181 1799
NEAR DEAR BALAGACHHI (B) 5886.84726883000936.54388367750308.82525241000 3.03260137 3495
NEAR BAIDYANATHPUR (A) 1344.81373562000213.94763975773232.64237110300 0.919641761 798
NEAR BAIDYANATHPUR (B 4544.93214180000723.05738619546396.69046651600 1.822724384 2698
NEAR MAJHYAMPUR 3931.66808993000625.49265067068285.51563726000 2.190747437 2334
NEAR BIRENDRANAGAR 3632.33051001000577.87076295614284.83325236300 2.028803723 2157
NEAR DEAR BALAGACHHI (A) 3355.91736420000533.89594430455233.44483537400 2.287032581 1993
NEAR DEAR BALAGACHHI (B) 5370.29155261000854.36456518796304.71235194900 2.80383962 3189
NEAR BAIDYANATHPUR (A) 2328.79002981000370.48932292432333.31394633500 1.111532617 1383
NEAR BAIDYANATHPUR (B 4205.26931052000669.02011758273320.68637109100 2.086213129 2497
NEAR MAJHYAMPUR 3150.02443526000501.14025106409334.46988097300 1.498312044 1870
NEAR BIRENDRANAGAR 3651.19947574000580.87264386773184.61424774400 3.146412863 2168
NEAR DEAR BALAGACHHI (A) 3178.45716437000505.66363978614249.89698498000 2.023488358 1887
NEAR DEAR BALAGACHHI (B) 4989.55946009000793.79355046886327.97694034900 2.420272442 2962
NEAR BAIDYANATHPUR (A) 3113.99124876000495.40769866636312.28272825300 1.586407617 1849
NEAR BAIDYANATHPUR (B 3414.69132434000543.24634705409312.31459221400 1.739420317 2027
NEAR MAJHYAMPUR 1149.75163380000182.91503265000253.91750436600 0.72037189 683
NEAR BIRENDRANAGAR 3569.46568700000567.86954111364407.31347495800 1.394183046 2119
NEAR DEAR BALAGACHHI (A) 2985.75679900000475.00676347727238.83278180700 1.988867524 1773
NEAR DEAR BALAGACHHI (B) 4807.85487700000764.88600315909328.08885551100 2.33133796 2855
NEAR BAIDYANATHPUR (A) 3471.19077900000552.23489665909297.42699238300 1.856707396 2061
NEAR BAIDYANATHPUR (B 3282.77338300000522.25940184091257.78767452800 2.02592852 1949
NEAR MAJHYAMPUR 495.60468500000 78.84619988636333.85752664900 0.236167208 294
where, w = Specific weight of water, Q = Discharge,
S = Slope (hydraulic)
Stream power (used as a surrogate for the sum of the
flow forces acting on a specific reach of stream bank
over a designated time period) was related to bank ero
sion rates. The stream power is proportional to the Bed
slope, discharge, and Specific weight of water. The high
stream power is the cause of river bank erosion. The
slope variation is less but the water discharge of Bhagi-
rathi River is high, so the stream power is another reason
for bank erosion.
7.3. Brick Making
Due to the process of using alluvial soil for brick making,
dig the soil from Bhagirathi river bank is the another cause
of bank erosion. Some places are Giria, Jangipur, Natun
Dear, Nashipur, Mehadipur (4 km from Berhampur to kandi
rout), Berhampur, Hatinagar (Berhampur), Dhulian, Niswa-
dbag, Madhyampur (near Beldanga) and Mahala etc.
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Figure 11. The adjacent upstream and downstream node s.
Figure 12. Maximum water discharge of feeder canal in
CFS (Source: CPT).
Near about more than 200 brick making factories are in-
fluence on Bhagirathi River bank at Murshidabad District.
One a day a brick factories dig approximately 12 to 16
trucks (11f x 6f x 2f) soil from the side of the river. Ap-
proximately 800 to 1000 bricks are prepared from per truck.
7.4. Slope
As the less variation in Hydraulic Slope (Table 8), it is
not a main factor for the Bhagirathi bank erosion. After
using the Equation (10) the hydraulic slope of the Bhagi-
rathi river bed is calculated.
Slope = 2.09(
Q) feet/1000f (10) [2]
where, M is Mean Particles Diameter, Q is Discharge.
The mean Particles Diameter from Giriato Jangipur is 0.
144 mm, from Jangipur to Berhampur is 0.155 mm an
d After Berhampur Particles Diameter is 0.209 mm.
7.5. Velocity
It is very difficult to observe the mean velocity of the
river due to time constrains. Most probably the velocity
Figure 13. Soil map of murshidabad.
Figure 14a. Clay and sand.
Fig ur e 1 4b. The soil particles.
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Figure 14. Field photo.
SLOPE IN FEET/1000 FEET (1x10-73)
Giria to Jangipur Jangipur to
1995 1.95855 1.09973 1.60451
1996 1.94359 1.09133 1.59225
1997 1.95924 1.10012 1.60507
1998 1.93907 1.08879 1.58855
1999 1.94036 1.08952 1.58960
2000 1.96751 1.10476 1.61184
2001 1.94036 1.08952 1.58960
2002 1.94294 1.09097 1.59172
2003 1.98800 1.11627 1.62863
2004 1.96891 1.10555 1.61299
2005 1.92524 1.08103 1.57722
2006 1.95149 1.09577 1.59872
of river is very uniform in this stretch.
8. Management
The traditional bank protection works, concrete walls,
cemented stone and brick, play a significant role in the
modification of the hydraulic aspect of the discharge
values and in the interference in the water dynamics of
erosive and depositional phenomena both upstream and
Trees with more condensed routs should be planted
to protect the erosion by the side of the river bank.
Not only that to prevent erosion temporarily, big
stones should put into the nets and would be placed
where erosion effect severely; especially where
people inhabits closure to the river.
As for as strong protection is concerned concrete
(cemented stone) embankments may be made to
prevent it. Especially in those areas where erosion
effect relatively moderately way. To be more prac-
tical this methods may be used from Dear Bala-
gachi to Baidyanathpur of Murshidabad District.
More over the process of using alluvial soil for
brick making from the side of the river should be
Heavy water discharge is considered responsible
for bank erosion. More discharge is the source of
more power of stream and more stream power oc-
curs more erosion in meandering river (Bhagirathi).
If some Barrage are constructed to reduce dis-
charge, stream power consequently will be reduced
and it will be a sustainable method for it.
By the cutting down Some canals (like feeder)
from Bhagirathi River to another river and divide
the water for agricultural land, associated people,
irrigation, fisheries, and hydraulic structures, it will
be reduced the water discharge and erosion.
Methods that deflect flow away from a bank to avoid
erosion is the another methods Bank Protection.
9. Conclusions
Remote sensing and GIS technology shows the great
potentiality to study the shifting of the Bhagirathi River.
It is observed from the toposheet of the year 1970 and
image of 1977 (MSS), 1990 (TM), 2000 (ETM+) and
2006 (google image) a significant change of the river
pattern. Due to fluctuation of water discharges from the
Farakka Barrage through the feeder canal at Jangipur and
also soil structures are the main cause of Bhagirathi Riv-
er bank erosion (Field photo, Figure 15). Maximum ero-
sion takes place at Dear Balagachi and after Baid-
yanathpur. A cut-off has take place at Baidyanathpur in
1984. It is found from the study that there is a possibility
of natural meander cut-off at Dear Balagachi and near
Majayampur. This study may be useful for future plan-
ning of land use, its associated people, irrigation, fisher-
ies, and hydraulic structures.
10. References
[1] K. Rudra, “Shifting of the Ganga and Land Erosion in
Copyright © 2011 SciRes. JGIS
West Bengal:A Socio-Ecological Viewpoint,” Centre for
Depelopment and Environment Policy, IIM, Kolkata,
2006, pp.1-43.
[2] B. K. Gopal, “The Bhagirathi-Hooghly Basin,” Published
by R. D. Press, 11/B, Chowringhee Terrace, Calcutta.
1972, pp. 73-74.
[3] S. Savindra, “Geomorphology,” Published by Prayag
Pustak Bhawan, Allahabad, No. 5, 2007.
[4] R. J. Garde, “River Morphology” published by New Age
International Publishers, 4835/24, Ansari Road, Darya-
ganj, New Delhi-110002 (Edition first), 2005, p. 127.
[5] A. D. Howard, “Modeling Channel Migration and Flood
plain Sedimentation in Meandering Streams,” University
of Virginia, Virginia, 1992.
[6] Report on the River Bhagirathi, Hydraulic Study De-
partment Calcutta Port Trust, Berhampore, Vol. I, July
1992-June 1993.