River Baitarani

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The Baitarani River or River Vaitarani (, Devanagari:वैतरणी नदी) is one of six major rivers of Orissa, India. Venerated in popular epic and legends, the Baitarani River is a source of water for agricultural irrigation. Most of the potentially arable land in the area is not under cultivation. The coastal plain of Orissa has the name of "Hexadeltaic region" or the "Gift of Six Rivers". These delta divide the coastal plain into three regions from north to south. The Baitarani, the Mahanadi and the Brahmani rivers form the Middle Coastal Plain, with evidence of past 'back bays' and present lakes.

The Baitarani originates from the Guptaganga hills in Gonasika of Keonjhar district in Orissa state of India at an elevation of 900 m above sea level. The uppermost part of the river, about 80 km in length, flows in a northerly direction; then it changes its path suddenly by 90<sup>0</sup> and flows eastward. The beginning portion of Baitarani acts as the boundary between Orissa and Jharkhand.

The river enters a plain at Anandapur and creates a deltaic zone at Akhuapada. The river travels a distance of 360 km to drain into the Bay of Bengal after joining of the Brahmani at Dhamra mouth near Chandabali. The river has 65 tributaries, of which 35 join from the left side and 30 join from the right side. The river basin in Orissa is spread in 42 blocks of eight districts.

A major portion of the river basin lies within the state of Orissa,...
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