The Periyar River is a major river in the southern Indian state of Kerala. It is also known as the Poorna River in its upper reaches. The river originates in the Sivagiri Hills of the Western Ghats and flows through the districts of Idukki and Ernakulam before draining into the Arabian Sea.
The Periyar River is significant for the region’s ecology, economy, and culture. It plays a vital role in irrigating agricultural lands and supplying water for various domestic, industrial, and hydroelectric purposes. The river is dammed at multiple points, including the Idukki Arch Dam, Mullaperiyar Dam, and Bhoothathankettu Dam, which generate hydroelectric power and provide water for irrigation.
The Periyar River and its surrounding areas are also home to the Periyar Wildlife Sanctuary, which is known for its diverse flora and fauna. The sanctuary covers a vast area of tropical evergreen forests and provides habitat to numerous species, including elephants, tigers, gaurs, sambar deer, and many bird species.
Additionally, the Periyar River holds cultural and religious significance. The famous Sabarimala Temple, one of the most important pilgrimage sites in South India, is situated along the river’s course. Every year, millions of devotees visit the temple during the pilgrimage season.
Overall, the Periyar River is an important natural resource, supporting the ecosystem, economy, and cultural heritage of Kerala.