Tarai - Encyclopedia




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TARAI, or Terai (i.e. "moist land"), the name of the submontane strip of marshy jungle stretching beneath the lower ranges of the Himalaya in northern India. This strip may be said to extend roughly from the Jumna river on the west to the Brahmaputra on the east, though the term is now officially confined to a subdivision of Naini Tal district in the United Provinces; area, 776 sq. m.; population (1901) 118,422. At its northern edge, where the waterless forest tract of the Bhabar ends, a series of springs burst from the surface, and these, increasing and uniting in their progress, form the numerous streams that intersect the Tarai. The Deoha is the great river of the Tarai proper, and is navigable at Pilibhit. Elephants, tigers, bears, leopards and other wild animals are found. Everywhere it is most unhealthy, and inhabited only by tribes who seem proof against malaria. A large portion lies within Nepal.

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