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Kozhikode ([koːɻikːoːɖ] ( listen)), or Calicut, is a metropolitan city in the state of Kerala in southern India on the Malabar Coast. Calicut is the largest urban area in the state and 192nd largest urban area in the world. The city lies about 275 kilometres (171 mi) west of Bangalore.
|• Mayor||Thottathil Raveendran|
|• City Police Commissioner||Mr. S. Kaliraj Mahesh kumar IPS|
|• Member of Parliament||M. K. Raghavan|
|• Metropolis||177 km2 (68 sq mi)|
|• Metro||518 km2 (200 sq mi)|
|Elevation||1 m (3 ft)|
|• Density||3,100/km2 (8,100/sq mi)|
|• Municipal corporation||550,440|
|• Official||Malayalam, English|
|Time zone||IST (UTC+5:30)|
|Telephone code||91 (0)495 , 496|
|Vehicle registration||KL 11, KL 18, KL 56,
KL 57, KL 81
|Sex ratio||1.093 ♀/♂|
During classical antiquity and the Middle Ages, Kozhikode was dubbed the "City of Spices" for its role as the major trading point of eastern spices. It was the capital of an independent kingdom ruled by the Samoothiris (Zamorins) in the Middle Ages and later of the erstwhile Malabar District under British rule. Arab merchants traded with the region as early as 7th century, and Portuguese explorer Vasco da Gama landed at Kozhikode on 20 May 1498, thus opening a trade route between Europe and Malabar. A Portuguese factory and fort was intact in Kozhikode for short period (1511–1525, until the Fall of Calicut), the English landed in 1615 (constructing a trading post in 1665), followed by the French (1698) and the Dutch (1752). In 1765, Mysore captured Kozhikode as part of its occupation of the Malabar Coast. Kozhikode, once a famous cotton-weaving centre, gave its name to the Calico cloth.
On 7 June 2012, Kozhikode was given the tag of "City of Sculptures" (Shilpa Nagaram) because of the various architectural sculptures located in various parts of the city. In May 2015, a food programme called Operation Sulaimani was introduced to help people who cannot afford a meal to have food with dignity.
According to data compiled by economics research firm Indicus Analytics on residences, earnings and investments, Kozhikode ranked as the second best city in India to reside in. It was ranked eleventh among Tier-II Indian cities in job creation by a study conducted by ASSOCHAM in 2007.
Although the city's official name is Kozhikode, in English it is sometimes known by its anglicised version, Calicut. The word calico, a fine variety of hand-woven cotton cloth that was exported from the port of Kozhikode, is thought to have been derived from Calicut. It is the historical capital of Kerala as the history dates back to 1498 AD when Vasco da Gama landed in Kappad, near Calicut.
Kozhikode is a town with a long recorded history. From time immemorial, the city has attracted travellers with its prosperity. It has traded in spices like black pepper and cardamom with Jews, Arabs, Phoenicians, and Chinese for more than 500 years. As Kozhikode offered full freedom and security, the Arab and the Chinese merchants preferred it to all other ports. The globe-trotter Ibn Batuta (A.D. 1342–47) said, "We came next to Kalikut, one of the great ports of the district of Malabar, and in which merchants of all parts are found."
Kozhikode was the capital of Malabar during the time of sri Samoothiri Maharajas, who ruled the region before the British took over. The city's first recorded contact with Europe was when Vasco da Gama landed at Kappad (18 km north) in May 1498, among the leaders of a trade mission from Portugal. He was received by his highness Sri Samoothiri Maharaja himself.
Early Kozhikode in foreign accounts
Accounts of the city and the conditions prevailing then can be gleaned from the chronicles of travellers who visited the port city.
Ibn Battuta (1342–1347), who visited six times, gives us the earliest glimpses of life in the city. He describes Kozhikode as "one of the great ports of the district of Malabar" where "merchants of all parts of the world are found". The king of this place, he says, "shaves his chin just as the Haidari Fakeers of Rome do...The greater part of the Muslim merchants of this place are so wealthy that one of them can purchase the whole freightage of such vessels put here and fit out others like them".
Ma Huan (1403 AD), the Chinese Muslim sailor part of the Imperial Chinese fleet under Cheng Ho (Zheng He) lauds the city as a great emporium of trade frequented by merchants from around the world. He makes note of the 20 or 30 mosques built to cater to the religious needs of the Muslims, the unique system of calculation by the merchants using their fingers and toes (followed to this day) and the matrilineal system of succession.
Abdur Razzak (1442–43) the ambassador of Persian Emperor Sha-Rohk finds the city harbour perfectly secured and notices precious articles from several maritime countries especially from Abyssinia, Zirbad and Zanzibar.
The Italian Niccolò de' Conti (1445), perhaps the first Christian traveller who noticed Kozhikode, describes the city as abounding in pepper, lac, ginger, a larger kind of cinnamon, myrobalans and zedary. He calls it a noble emporium for all India, with a circumference of eight miles (13 km).
The Russian traveller Athanasius Nikitn or Afanasy Nikitin (1468–74) calls 'Calecut' a port for the whole Indian sea and describes it as having a "big bazaar."
Kozhikode and its suburbs formed part of the Polanad kingdom ruled by the Porlatiri. The Eradis of Nediyirippu in Eranad wanted an outlet to the sea, to initiate trade and commerce with the distant lands. and after fighting with the king Polatthiri for 48 years conquered the area around Panniankara. After this, Menokki were became the ruler of Polanad and came to terms with the troops and people. After this, the town of Kozhikode was founded close to the palace at Tali. Then, the Eradis shifted their headquarters from Nediyirippu to Kozhikode. The Governor of Ernad built a fort at a place called Velapuram to safeguard his new interests. The fort most likely lent its name to Koyil Kotta the precursor to Kozhikode. Thus the city came into existence sometime in the 13th century CE. The status of Udaiyavar increased and he became known as Swami Nambiyathiri Thirumulpad, and eventually Samuri or Samoothiri. Europeans called him in a corrupt form as Samorin.
According to K.V. Krishna Iyer, the rise of Kozhikode is at once a cause and a consequence of Samoothiri's ascendancy in Kerala. By the end of the century, Samoothiri was at the zenith of his powers with all princes and chieftains of Kerala north of Kochi acknowledging his suzerainty.
Geography and climate
The city of Kozhikode is 410 kilometres (255 mi) north of the state capital Thiruvananthapuram. It is located at approximately . It has an elevation of 1 metre (3 ft) along the coast with the city's eastern edges rising to at least 15 metres, with a sandy coastal belt and a lateritic midland. The city has a 15 km (9.3 mi) long shoreline and small hills dot the terrain in the eastern and central regions. To the city's west is the Laccadive Sea and from approximately 60 kilometres (37 mi) to the east rises the Sahyadri Mountains.
The geographical conditions of city area and suburban areas are similar to the other parts of the district falling in coastal and midland zones. The region comprising Kozhikode Corporation and peri-urban blocks belong to the low- and midlands in the typical classification of land in Kerala as low-, mid- and highlands. Lagoons and backwaters characterise the lowland, which receives runoff from the rivers. The lowland is often subjected to salinity intrusion. The coastal plains exhibit more or less flat, narrow terrain with landforms such as beach ridges, sandbars, and backwater marshes. A few kilometres from the sea to the east, the surface gathers into slopes and clustering hills with numerous valleys in between formed due to floods and sediment transport. The Midlands is represented by hummocky rocky terrain with lateritised denudational hills and intervening valley fills (locally called elas). The 'elas' are fairly wide in the lower reaches of midlands and narrow towards the upper parts of the midlands.
A number of rivers originating from the Sahyadri run along the outer reaches of the city. These include the Chaliyar puzha, Kallayi Puzha, Korapuzha river, Poonoor puzha (river), and Iravanjhi puzha. Of these, Kallai river that runs through the southern part of the city has been the most important culturally and historically for Kozhikode. The Kallai River has its origin in Cherikkulathur village. It is connected with Chaliyar on the south by a man-made canal. The river passes through Cherukulathur, Kovur, Olavanna, Manava and Kallai before finally joining the sea near Kozhikode. The length of the river is 22 kilometres (14 mi).
The Korapuzha river is formed by the confluence of the Agalapuzha with the Punnurpuzha, and it joins the sea at Elathur. The Agalapuzha is more or less a backwater while the Punnurpuzha originates from Arikkankunni. The total length of the river is 40 kilometres (25 mi). Panurpuzha is a tributary of Korapuzha. It passes through the northern boundary of the study area and joins to the sea. The river is perennial.
Canoly Canal was built in 1848 to connect the Korapuzha river in the north to Kallayi river in the south. It functions as a drain to reduce flooding in the city during the rainy season and as a navigation channel. A system of wetland (mangrove) forests pervade the city from Kallai river to Eranjikkal.
Kozhikode features a tropical monsoon climate (Köppen climate classification Am). The city has a highly humid tropical climate with high temperatures recorded from March to May. A brief spell of pre-monsoon Mango showers hits the city sometime during April. However, the primary source of rain is the South-west monsoon that sets in the first week of June and continues until September. The city receives significant precipitation from the North-East Monsoon that sets in from the second half of October through November.
The average annual rainfall is 3,266 mm. The weather is milder from December/January until March when the skies are clear and the air is crisp. Winters are seldom cold. According to climate charts, 12 locations in India are cooler, 26 are warmer, 37 are dryer and only 1 is wetter than Kozhikode[dubious ] The highest temperature recorded was 39.4 °C in March 1975. The lowest was 14 °C recorded on 26 December 1975.
|Climate data for Kozhikode|
|Record high °C (°F)||35.8
|Average high °C (°F)||28.9
|Daily mean °C (°F)||26.8
|Average low °C (°F)||21.7
|Record low °C (°F)||17.4
|Average precipitation mm (inches)||2.7
|Average rainy days||0.3||0.3||1.1||4.9||10.8||25.4||25.3||23.3||13.0||11.9||7.7||1.9||125.9|
|Average relative humidity (%)||70||72||73||74||78||88||90||90||86||82||77||71||79.3|
|Source #1: IMD (average high and low, precipitation)|
|Source #2: NOAA (extremes, mean, humidity, rain days, 1971–1990)|
Total Population under Municipal Corporation limits is 550,440. Males form 47.7% and females 52.3%.
Kozhikode has been a multi-ethnic and multi-religious town since the early medieval period. The Hindus forms largest religious group, followed by Muslims and Christians. Hindus form the majority at 57.7% of the population with 315807 members. Muslims form 37.6% of the population with 207298 members.
The Muslims of Kozhikode are known as Mappilas, and according to the official Kozhikode website "the great majority of them are Sunnis following the Shafi school of thought. There are also some smaller communities among the Muslims such as Dawoodi Bohras. Many of the Muslims living in the historic part of the city follow matriliny and are noted for their piety. Though Christianity is believed to have been introduced in Kerala in 52 CE, the size of community in Malabar (northern Kerala) began to rise only after the arrival of the Portuguese towards the close of the 15th century. A few Christians of Thiruvitankoor and Kochi have lately migrated to the hilly regions of the district and are settled there.
Pre-modern Kozhikode was already teeming with people of several communities and regional groups. Most of these communities continued to follow their traditional occupations and customs till the 20th century.[better source needed] A number of Brahmins too lived in the city mostly around the Hindu temples. Regional groups like the Tamil Brahmins, Gujaratis and Marwari Jains became part of the city at various periods and lived around their shrines.
The Nairs formed the rulers, warriors and landed gentry of Kozhikode. The Samoothiri had a ten thousand strong Nair bodyguard called the Kozhikkottu pathinaayiram (The 10,000 of Kozhikode) who defended the capital and supported the administration within the city. He had a larger force of 30,000 Nairs in his capacity as the Prince of Eranadu, called the Kozhikkottu Muppatinaayiram (The 30,000 of Kozhikode). The Nairs also formed the members of the suicide squad (chaver).[better source needed] The Mappila community of Kozhikode acted as an important support base for the city's military, economic and political affairs. They were settled primarily in Kuttichira and Idiyangara. Their aristocratic dwelling houses were similar to the tharavad houses of the Nairs and the Thiyyas. Two Ghazi's were recognised as their spiritual leaders. Travellers like Barbosa were intrigued by the extent to which the Mapillas blended into the local society, who spoke the same language and looked like any other Nair (except for the round caps and long beards).
The Thiyyas formed the vaidyars(Physicians), local militia and traders of Kozhikode. Several aristocratic thiyya families such as 'Kallingal madom' were settled in and around the city.
The Tamil Brahmins are primarily settled around the Tali Siva temple. They arrived in Kozhikode as dependants of chieftains, working as cooks, cloth merchants and moneylenders. They have retained their Tamil language and dialects as well as caste rituals. The Gujarati community is settled mostly around the Jain temple in and around the Valliyangadi. They owned a large number of establishments, especially textile and sweet shops. They must have arrived in Kozhikode at least from the beginning of the 14th century. They belong to either the Hindu or the Jain community. A few Marwari families are also found in Kozhikode who were basically moneylenders.
The city is administered by the Kozhikode Corporation, headed by a mayor. For administrative purposes, the city is divided into 75 wards, from which the members of the corporation council are elected for five years. Recently neighbouring suburbs Beypore, Elathur, Cheruvannur and Nallalam were merged within the municipal corporation.
|Kozhikode Municipal Corporation|
|Deputy Mayor||Meera Darsak|
|Member of Parliament||M.K.Raghvan|
|District Collector||Shri. U V Jose IAS|
|Police Commissioner||Shri S Kaliraj Mahesh Kumar IPS|
Kozhikode Corporation is the first City Corporation in Kerala after the creation of the state. Established in 1962, Kozhikode Corporation's first mayor was H Manjunatha Rao. Kozhikode corporation has four assembly constituencies – Kozhikode North, Kozhikode South, Beypore and Elathur – all of which are part of Kozhikode.
Corporation Election 2015
Political Performance in Election 2015
|S.No.||Party Name||Party symbol||Number of Corporators|
Initiatives by District Administration
- Operation Sulaimani : Providing food with dignity for those who cannot afford a meal through contributions from the public.
- Project 4 N : Maintenance of roads through public participation.
- Savari Giri Giri : To enable students to travel in buses with dignity.
- Compassionate Kozhikode: The brand name for plethora of initiatives launched by the District Administration in partnership with civil society, Government agencies and citizens, who volunteer to make Kozhikode an authentic and inspirational destination for them to live and invite others to visit and experience it. It is the brainchild of the current District Collector Prasanth N. (IAS).
Law and order
The Kozhikode City Police is headed by a commissioner, an Indian Police Service (IPS) officer. The present District Police Chief is S Kaliraj Mahesh Kumar IPS and Merin Joseph IPS is Deputy Commissioner of Police. The city is divided into six zones each under a circle officer. Apart from regular law and order, the city police comprises the traffic police, bomb squad, dog squad, fingerprint bureau, women's cell, juvenile wing, narcotics cell, riot force, armed reserve camps, district crime records bureau and a women's station. It operates 16 police stations functioning under the Home Ministry of Government of Kerala.
National Highway 66 connects Kozhikode to Mumbai via Mangalore, Udupi and Goa to the north and Kochi and Kanyakumari near Thiruvananthapuram to the south along the west coast of India. This highway connects the city with the other important towns like, Uppala, Kasaragod, Kanhangad, Kannur, Thalassery, Mahe, Vadakara, Koyilandy, Vengalam, Ramanattukara, Kottakkal, Kuttippuram, Ponnani, (Guruvayoor)Chavakkad, Kodungallur, North Paravur, Edapally and proceed to Kanyakumari.
National Highway 966 connects Kozhikode to coimbatore through Palakkad. It covers a distance of 125 kilometres (78 mi). At Ramanattukara, a suburb of Kozhikode, it joins NH 66. It also passes through towns like Kondotty, Malappuram, Perinthalmanna, and Mannarkkad. This stretch also connects the city and Calicut International Airport.
SH 29 passes through the city. It connects NH 212, Malabar Christian College, civil station, Kunnamangalam and also Padanilam, Thamarassery, Chellot, Chitragiri and Road to Gudallor from Kerala border.
SH 54 is connecting city and Kalpetta. The highway is 99.0 kilometres (61.5 mi) long. The highway passes through Pavangad, Kozhikode, Ulliyeri, Perambra, Poozhithodu, Peruvannamuzhi and Padinjarethara. SH 68 starts from Kappad and ends in Adivaram. The highway is 68.11 kilometres (42.32 mi) long.
The history of railways in Malabar dates back to 1861 when the first tracks were laid between Tirur and Beypore. Kozhikode railway station is the only A1 railway station in Palakkad railway division and it is situated in the Shoranur-Mangalore section. Today, Kozhikode is well connected by rail to cities like Thiruvananthapuram, Kochi, Kollam, Palakkad, Coimbatore, Katpadi, Vellore, Hyderabad, Chennai, Bangalore, Kannur, Mangalore, Mumbai, New Delhi, Vijayawada and Visakhapatnam.
Calicut International Airport is 26 kilometres (16 mi) from the city at Karipur . Regular domestic services are operated to major Indian cities. There are frequent international flights to the Middle eastern air hubs like Dubai, Abu Dhabi, Salalah, Muscat, Dammam, Riyadh, Jeddah, Sharjah, Bahrain, Doha and to domestic hubs Chennai, Hyderabad, Bangalore, Mumbai and New Delhi.
Cyberpark, is a Government of Kerala organisation planned to build, operate and manage IT parks for the promotion and development of investment in IT and ITES industries in Malabar region of Kerala and will be the third IT hub in the state of Kerala.The two IT park will create a total 100,000(100000) direct job opportunities. It is in the process of setting up IT parks at Kozhikode, at the SEZs approved at Kannur and Kasargod. Its first project is the development of Cyberpark hub in Kozhikode with its spokes at Kannur and Kazargode IT parks. Other planned projects include the Birla IT park (at Mavoor) and Malaysian satellite city (at Kinaloor) where KINFRA has plans to set up a 400-acre (1.6 km2) industrial park.
The city has a strong mercantile aspect. The main area of business was once Valiyangadi (Big Bazaar) near the railway station. As time progressed, it shifted to other parts of the city. These days, the commercial heart has moved to Mittai Theruvu (Sweetmeat Street or S. M. Street), a long street crammed with shops that sell everything from saris to cosmetics. It also houses restaurants and sweetmeat shops. Today, the city has multiple shopping malls. Focus Mall (the first shopping mall in Kerala), HiLITE Mall (the second largest mall in Kerala) and RP Mall are a few among them. Currently, new shopping malls are springing up all over the city. This has changed the consumer habits, shifting the centre of commerce from S. M. Street to these places.
In addition to the Malabar Mahotsavam, the annual cultural fest of Kozhikode, every year since 1981 the Tyagaraja Aradhana Trust has been conducting a five-day music festival in honour of Tyagaraja. The festival is complete with the Uncchavritti, rendering of Divyanama kritis, Pancharatna Kritis, concerts by professional artistes and students of music from morning to late in the evening.
Kozhikode has a tradition of Ghazal and Hindustani music appreciation. There are many Malayalam Ghazals. The late film director and play back singer M. S. Baburaj, from Kozhikode was influenced by Ghazal and Hindustani.
The Kozhikode radio station of All India Radio has two transmitters: Kozhikode AM (100 kilowatt) and Kozhikode FM [Vividh Bharathi] (10 kilowatt). Private FM radio stations: Radio Mango 91.9 operated by Malayala Manorama Co. Ltd. and Red FM 93.5 of the SUN Network. AIR FM radio station: Kozhikode – 103.6 MHz; AIR MW radio station: Kozhikode – 684 kHz.
A television transmitter has been functioning in Kozhikode since 3 July 1984, relaying programmes from Delhi and Thiruvananthapuram Doordarshan. Doordarshan has its broadcasting centre in Kozhikode located at Medical College. The Malayalam channels based on Kozhikode are the Shalom Television, Darshana TV and Media One TV. All major channels in Malayalam viz. Manorama News, Asianet, Surya TV, Kairali TV, Amrita TV, Jeevan TV, Indiavision and Jaihind have their studios and news bureaus in the city. Satellite television services are available through DD Direct+, Dish TV, Sun Direct DTH and Tata Sky. Asianet Cable Vision popularly known as ACV telecasts daily city news. Spidernet is another local channel. Other local operators include KCL and Citinet.
The Calicut Press Club came into existence in 1970. It is the nerve centre of all media activities, both print and electronic. Began with around 70 members in the roll, this Press Club, over the years, became a prestigious and alert media centre in the state with a present membership of over 280.[better source needed]
There are 1,237 schools in Kozhikode district including 191 highschools.
The beginning of western education may be traced back to the first half of the 19th century, when in 1848 the basal Evangelical Mission started a primary school at Kallai. In 1877, a school for the young Rajas was started in Kozhikode. This was later thrown open to all caste Hindu boys. In 1879, it was affiliated to the University of Madras as a second grade college and with this, collegiate education in the district received a fillip. Secondary education recorded an appreciable progress since 1915. The erstwhile Malabar district, of which the present Kozhikode district formed a part, holds a high rank among the districts of Madras Presidency in secondary education.
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