The Chambal River is a tributary of the Yamuna River in central India, and forms part of the greater Gangetic drainage system. The river flows north-northeast through Madhya Pradesh, running for a time through Rajasthan, then forming the boundary between Rajasthan and Madhya Pradesh before turning southeast to join the Yamuna in Uttar Pradesh state.
It is a legendary river and finds mention in ancient scriptures. The perennial Chambal originates at Manpura, south of Mhow town, near Indore, on the south slope of the Vindhya Range in Madhya Pradesh. The Chambal and its tributaries drain the Malwa region of northwestern Madhya Pradesh, while its tributary, the Banas, which rises in the Aravalli Range, drains southeastern Rajasthan. It ends a confluence of five rivers, including the Chambal, Kwari, Yamuna, Sind, Pahuj, at Pachnada near Bhareh in Uttar Pradesh state, at the border of Bhind and Etawah districts.
The Chambal River is considered pollution free, and hosts an amazing riverine faunal assemblage including 2 species of crocodilians – the mugger and gharial, 8 species of freshwater turtles, smooth-coated otters, gangetic river dolphins, skimmers, black-bellied terns, sarus cranes and black-necked storks, amongst others.
National Chambal Sanctuary
The National Chambal Sanctuary consists of the large arc described by the Chambal between Jawahar Sagar Dam in Rajasthan and the Chambal-Yamuna confluence in Uttar Pradesh. Over this arc, two stretches of the Chambal are protected as the National Chambal Sanctuary status - the upper sector, extending from Jawahar Sagar Dam to Kota Barrage, and the lower sector, extending from Keshoraipatan in Rajasthan to the Chambal-Yamuna confluence in Uttar Pradesh.
The sanctuary was gazetted 'in order to facilitate the restoration to "ecological health" of a major north Indian river system and provide full protection for the gravely endangered gharial
Administrative approval of the Government of India for the establishment of the National Chambal Sanctuary was conveyed in Order No. 17-74/77-FRY (WL) dated 30th September 1978.