Malappuram district

Malappuram (/mələppurəm/ (About this soundlisten)), located in the southern part of former Malabar district, is a revenue district in the Indian state of Kerala. The city of Malappuram, the district headquarters, gives the district its name.

Malappuram district
Calicut Airport At Night.jpg
Kerala Houseboat (191490747).jpeg
Thunjan parambu1.jpg
A sunset from Kottakkunnu, Malappuram.jpg
Cherumb eco tourism village, Karuvarakundu India (3).JPG
Anti-clockwise from top:
Karipur International Airport during night, Biyyam Kayal in Ponnani, A statue of Thunchath Ezhuthachan's parrot and pen in Thunchan Parambu, Koomban Mala in Karuvarakundu, A Sunset from Kottakkunnu, Historically important headquarters of Malabar Special Police in Malappuram.
The Mecca of Kerala football[1][2][3]
Location of Malappuram district in Kerala
Location of Malappuram district in Kerala
Coordinates: 11°N 76°E / 11°N 76°E / 11; 76Coordinates: 11°N 76°E / 11°N 76°E / 11; 76
Country India
District formation16 June 1969; 50 years ago (1969-06-16)
 • District collectorJaffer Malik, IAS[5]
 • District Panchayath PresidentA. P. Unnikrishnan (IUML)[6]
 • Members of Lok Sabha
 • Niyamasabha constituencies16
 • Total3,554 km2 (1,372 sq mi)
Area rank3rd
Highest elevation2,594 m (8,510 ft)
 • Total4,112,920[4]
 • Rank1st
 • Density1,157/km2 (3,000/sq mi)
 • OfficialMalayalam
 • Additional officialEnglish
Time zoneUTC+5:30 (IST)
ISO 3166 codeIN-KL
Vehicle registrationMalappuram: KL-10,
Perinthalmanna: KL-53,
Ponnani: KL-54,
Tirur: KL-55,
Tirurangadi: KL-65,
Nilambur: KL-71,
Kondotty: KL-84
Sex ratio1098 /

It is the most populous district in Kerala, which is home to about 12.3% of the total population of the state.[7] The district was formed on 16 June 1969 spanning an area of about 3,554 km2 (1,372 sq mi). Today it is the third-largest district in Kerala in terms of area.

Malappuram district was carved out by combining some portions of the former Palakkad and Kozhikode districts- Eranad taluk and portions of Tirur taluk in the former Kozhikode district, and portions of Perinthalmanna taluk and Ponnani taluk in the former Palakkad district (before 1969). Now the district comprises seven Taluks- Ponnani, Perinthalmanna, Tirur, Eranad, Tirurangadi, Kondotty, and Nilambur. Malayalam is the most widely spoken language of the district. Though the headquarters of the district is in Malappuram, its economy is mainly centred in the city of Manjeri.

The district has contributed well to the cultural traditions of Kerala. It was the birthplace of many poets like Thunchath Ezhuthachan, Poonthanam Nambudiri, Uroob, Vallathol Narayana Menon, and Moyinkutty Vaidyar. Besides the poets, the district has also contributed many writers, and religious and political leaders. The first Chief Minister of Kerala, E. M. S. Namboodiripad, was born in the district. The rulers of two of the three main kingdoms of Kerala during the late medieval period had their earlier headquarters in the district- Perumpadappu in Ponnani Taluk was the hometown of the Kingdom of Cochin, which is also known as Perumbadappu Swaroopam, and Nediyiruppu in Kondotty Taluk was the earlier headquarters of the Zamorin of Calicut, which is also known as Nediyiruppu Swaroopam.


The term, Malappuram, which means "terraced place atop the hills", is derived from the geography of Malappuram city, the district headquarters.


Ancient periodEdit

Ruins of an ancient Jain temple at Arimbra

The district has a rich cultural and political heritage. The Stone Age history of the district is not well-known. However, the remains of some pre-historic symbols like Dolmens, Menhirs, and Rock-cut caves have been found from various places of the district like Nilambur, Manjeri, etc. Rock-cut caves are also seen in the places like Puliyakkode, Thrikkulam, Oorakam, Melmuri, Ponmala, Vallikunnu, and Vengara.[8] The port of Ponnani (known as Tyndis in the ancient period) was a center of trade with Ancient Rome. During Sangam period, the region was included in the Kudanadu, a province in the Ancient Tamilakam.

Early medieval periodEdit

After the Chera Dynasty, a number of dynasties controlled the area, and by the ninth century the region was ruled by the Kulasekharas of Mahodayapuram. A piece of inscriptional evidence found at the Triprangode Siva Temple indicates that Goda Ravi of Chera Dynasty controlled the present-day district in the early 10th century. Descriptions about the rulers of Eranad region can be seen in the Jewish copper plates of Bhaskara Ravi Varman (1000 CE) and in the Viraraghava copper plates of Veera Raghava Chakravarthy (1225 CE). [8] After the disintegration of the Kulasekhara kingdom, a number of Nair city-states emerged, including Valluvanad, Vettattunadu (Tanur), Parappanad and Nediyiruppu (ruled by the Zamorins).

Zamorin's ruleEdit

During the 14th century, the Samoothiri of Calicut expanded their territories to many parts of the district. Thirunavaya, the seat of Mamankam, is located at the present-day Tirur Taluk in Malappuram district. Thrikkavil Kovilakam in Ponnani served as a second home for the Samoothiris of Kozhikode. The Samoothiri of Kozhikode earned a greater part of his revenues by taxing the spice trade through his ports. Smaller ports in the kingdom included Puthuppattanam (Kottakkal), Parappanangadi, Tanur, and Ponnani.[9][10] The headquarters of the Azhvanchery Thamprakkal was situated in the Athavanad. In the famous work Brahmandapuranam, of the poet Thunchaththu Ezhuthachan, Azhvanchery Thamprakkals had been mentioned with the title "Netranarayanan". Many literary works during the medieval period also helps a lot to find traces of the history of the district. Sanskrit works such as Kokila Sandeśa (15th-century CE) written by Uddanda Śāstrī, Bhramara Sandesham (17th century CE) written by Vasudevan, and Chathaka Sandesha (18th-century CE) has the descriptions about the places including Tirunavaya, Puthupatanam (Present-day Kottakkal), Triprangode, etc. [11]A lot of medieval Malayalam works also help to find the history of the district. The works like Kozhikode Granthavari, Mamakam Kilippattu written by Kadanchery Namboodiri in 17th-century CE, Kandaru Menon Patappattu (1683), and another 17th-century, work Ramchcha Panicker Pattu contain many pieces of information about the Mamankam festival in Tirunavaya.[12] All of these were literary works. The ever first book fully based on the history of Kerala, written by a Keralite, was published from the district- Tuhfat Ul Mujahideen written by Zainuddin Makhdoom II in Ponnani during 16th-century CE. It is written in Arabic and contains a lot of information about the resistance put up by the navy of Kunjali Marakkar alongside the Zamorin of Calicut from 1498 to 1583 against Portuguese attempts to colonize the Malabar coast.[13][14]

Cultural and Scientific progressEdit

The Thunchan Smarakam in Tirur, in memory of Thunchaththu Ezhuthachan, who is known as the father of modern Malayalam language

A number of medieval Malayalam poets hailed from Malappuram, including Melpathur Narayana Bhattathiri who composed the Narayaneeyam in Sanskrit, Poonthanam Nambudiri and Thunchaththu Ramanujan Ezhuthachan. Among them, Thunchaththu Ramanujan Ezhuthachan is known as the father of modern Malayalam language. Today the district includes Tirunavaya, the classic medieval centre of Vedic learning and Kottakkal, home of Ayurveda medicine. In the field of astronomy and mathematics also, Malappuram has dedicated its talented persons during the medieval period. The ancient Kerala school of astronomy and mathematics though mainly centered in Thrissur also had Namboodiri and Nair scholars coming from Malappuram. The Parameshvara, the Nilakantha Somayaji, the Jyeṣṭhadeva, the Achyutha Pisharadi, and the Melpathur Narayana Bhattathiri, who were the main members of the Kerala School of Astronomy and Mathematics hailed from Tirur area in the district.

Colonial periodEdit

South Malabar during the Malabar rebellion in 1921 (today a major part lies in the Malappuram district)
Ali Musliyar, one of the chief Mappila rebels

European colonial powers first landed in Malabar during the 15th century, and the Samoothiris often allied with foreign powers. When William Keeling, a sea captain of English East India Company arrived at Kingdom of Calicut in 1615, he got the permission to start warehouses in the coastal city of Ponnani, through a treaty signed with the then Zamorin of Calicut.[15] During the 18th century, the de facto Mysore kingdom rulers Hyder Ali and Tipu Sultan marched into the Zamorin’s kingdom. In 1792, Tipu Sultan was defeated by the East India Company through Third Anglo-Mysore War, and Treaty of Seringapatam was agreed. As per this treaty, most of the Malabar region including the present-day Malappuram district was integrated into the English East India Company. Hence, the colonial era in the district was started. In 1800, the newly formed Malabar district by the British was integrated with the Madras Presidency.

This district was the venue for many of the Mappila revolts (uprisings against the British East India Company in Kerala) between 1792 and 1921. Malappuram has been part of movements such as Khilafat Movement and Malabar rebellion in the early 20th century. Wagon tragedy (1921) is still a saddening memory of the Malabar rebellion. It was the death of 64 prisoners on 20 November 1921 before the Onam.[16] The prisoners had been taken into custody following the Mappila Rebellion against the British in various parts of the district. Their deaths through apparent negligence discredited the British Raj and generated sympathy for the Indian independence movement. Wagon tragedy memorial still exists in Tirur as a historical monument. The present district was administered as parts of Kozhikode taluk, Eranad taluk, Valluvanad Taluk and Ponnani taluk in the Malabar district.


The Malabar District remained as a part of Madras state for a few years after independence, but on 1 November 1956 it merged with Travancore-Cochin to form the state of Kerala. The newly merged Malabar District was divided into Kannur, Kozhikode and Palakkad in 1957 soon after the formation of Kerala. Large-scale changes in the territorial jurisdiction of the region took place between 1957 and 1969. On 1 January 1957, Tirur taluk was formed by adjoining the major portions of Eranad taluk and Ponnani taluk. Another portion of Ponnani taluk was transferred to the new Chavakkad taluk in Thrissur district, and the remainder is present-day Ponnani taluk. Perinthalmanna taluk was formed from the former Valluvanad Taluk. Of these, Eranad Taluk and Tirur remained in Kozhikode District and Perinthalmanna Taluk and Ponnani taluk remained in Palakkad District. The new district of Malappuram was formed with four taluks (Eranad, Perinthalmanna, Tirur, and Ponnani), four towns, fourteen developmental blocks and 100 panchayats. Later, three more taluks, Tirurangadi, Nilambur and Kondotty were formed from Tirur Taluk and Eranad taluk.

In the early years of Communist rule in Kerala, Malappuram experienced land reform under the Land Reform Ordinance. During the 1970s Persian Gulf oil reserves were opened to commercial extraction and thousands of unskilled workers migrated to the Gulf. They sent money home, supporting the rural economy, and by the late 20th century the region had First World health standards and near-universal literacy.[17]


The Cherumb eco-tourism village in Karuvarakundu

Bounded by the Nilgiri hills on the east, the Arabian Sea on the west, the Wayanad and Kozhikode districts on the north, and the Palakkad and Thrissur districts on the south, Malappuram district possesses a total geographical area of 3,554, which ranks third in the state in terms of area. The district possesses 9.15% of the total area of the state. The district is located at 75°E - 77°E longitude and 10°N - 12°N latitude in the geographical map. Similar to the other parts of Kerala, the Malappuram district also has a coastal area (lowland) bounded by the Arabian Sea at the west, a midland at the centre, and a hilly area (highland), bounded by the Western Ghats at the east.

Eranad and Perinthalmanna Talukas are located in the midland. The vast Nilambur Taluk covers the whole hilly area (highland) where the population is less, but the land area (including a lot of forest area) is more.

Physical divisionsEdit

On the basis of topography, geology, soils, climate, and natural vegetation, Malappuram district is divided into 5 sub-micro regions:

  • Malappuram coast
  • Malappuram undulating plain
  • Chaliyar river basin
  • Nilambur forested hills
  • Perinthalmanna undulating uplands.

Malappuram coast lies all along the coastal tract of Malappuram. It makes its boundaries with Kozhikode coast in the north, Malappuram undulating plain in the east, Thrissur coast in the south and Lakshadweep Sea in the west. The region is drained by the major rivers like Chaliyar, Kadalundi, Ponnani, etc. canals and backwaters. The maximum height is located at the Kalpakanchery village (104 m) of Tirur Taluk. Coconut palms and paddy are mainly found here. The Malappuram undulating plain lies parallel to the coast. It makes it boundaries with Nadapuram-Mavur undulating plains in the north, Chaliyar river basin and Perinthalmanna undulating upland in the east, Pattambi undulating plain in the south and Malappuram coast in the west. The Nenmini hill (478 m) in Kannamangalam is the highest point and the Vazhayur in the northern part (95 m) is the lowest. Cashew, coconut, and tapioca can be seen here. Chaliyar river basin entirely lies in the Eranad Taluk. It makes its boundaries by Nilambur forested hills in its north and east, Perinthalmanna undulating upland in the south and Malappuram undulating plain in its east. Rubber, cashew, pepper, and coconut are the important vegetation. Nilambur forested hills make its boundaries with Kozhikode forested hills and Wayanad forested hills in the north, Tamil Nadu in the east, Mannarkad-Palakkad forested hills in the south and Chaliyar river basin in the west. It is a part of Western Ghats. Many peaks with over 1000 m height can be seen here. The lowest point is located in Mampad (115 m). Perinthalmanna undulating uplands make its boundaries with Chaliyar river basin in the north, Mannarkad-Palakkad forested hills in the east, Palakkad Gap in the south and Malappuram undulating plain in the west. Kadalundi River drains this region. The maximum height of the region is 610 m. at the Vadakkangara. Coconut, palms, pepper, rubber and cashew are splendid here.[18]

Coastal regionEdit

Ponnani, Tirur, and Tirurangadi talukas are situated in the most populous coastal region. Malappuram ranks fourth in the length of coastlines among the districts of Kerala having a coastline of 70 km (11.87% of the total coastline of Kerala).[19]Ponnani, Tanur, Parappanangadi, and Kootayi, which lies in the southwest part of the district, are the major fishing centres of the district. Ponnani is the only port. The sea coast of the district is rich in marine wealth.[18] Ponnani was the navy capital of Zamorin of Calicut. Ponnani is also a cultural centre of the district. Apart from being a favorite destination of the Arab traders 2000 years ago, Ponnani was also a captivating destination for many Muslim spiritual leaders, who were instrumental in introducing Islam here. The port city is also known as The Mecca of Malabar.[20] During the months of February/April, thousands of migratory birds arrive here. Located close to Ponnani is Biyyam Kayal, a placid, green-fringed waterway with a water sports facility. The coastal town of Tanur was the capital of the Kingdom of Vettathunad in the early medieval period, and is known for Keraladeshpuram Temple. Parappanangadi was included in the Parappanad kingdom in the early medieval period.


The Kuttippuram bridge in Kuttippuram over Bharathappuzha

The Chaliyar, the Kadalundi River, the Bharathappuzha and the Tirur River are the district's major rivers. Chaliyar has a total length of about 168 km. and a drainage area of 2818 km2. Kadalundi River passes through places like Melattur, Pandikkad, Malappuram, Panakkad, Parappur, Kooriyad, and Tirurangadi. It has a length of 130 km. with a catchment area of 1114 km2. and a total run off of 2189 million cubic feet. Bharathappuzha has a total length of 209 km. Tirur River is 48 km long. Besides these large rivers, the district also has a small river called Purapparamba River, which is just 8 km long. It is connected to major rivers via Conolly Canal.[21][18]

Geology and Economic mineralsEdit

A laterite brick stone from Angadipuram Laterite.

Laterite stone is abundant in the midland areas of the district. Archean Gneiss is the most seen geological formation of the district. Quartz magnetite, which is abundantly seen in the Porur region is the most economically important mineral found in the district. Quartz gneisses can be seen in the places like Nilambur, Edavanna, and Pandikkad. Garneliforus Quartz can be seen in Manjeri and Kondotty areas. Charnokite rocks are common in some areas of Nilambur and Edavanna. Dykes consisting of Plagioclase, Feldspar, and Pyroxene in typical laterite texture can be seen near Manjeri. Deposits of good quality iron ore have reported from Eranad region of the district. Deposits of lime shells are found in the coastal areas like Ponnani and Kadalundinagaram. The coastal sands of Ponnani and Veliyankode contain a high amount of heavy minerals like Ilmenite and Monazite. Kaolinite is splendid in Perinthalmanna and Ponnani Talukas. Deposits of Ball clay have been found from Thekkummuri village. Parts of Nilambur taluk are included in the hidden Wayanadan goldfields. Explorations did in the valleys of Chaliyar in Nilambur has shown reserves of the order of 2.5 million cubic meters of placers with 0.1 gram per cubic meter of gold.[18] Bauxite has discovered from some parts of the district like Kottakkal, Parappil, Oorakam, and Melmuri.[22]

Economy, Industry and InfrastructureEdit

Malappuram has the highest number of emigrants in the state. According to the 2016 economic review report published by the Government of Kerala, every 54 per 100 households in the district is emigrants.[23] Most of them work in the Middle East. They are the major contributors to the district economy. They also contribute much to the state economy.

Though Malappuram is rich in natural resources, the district is one of the industrially backward districts in the state due to the lack of infrastructure. There is no industry functioning under the Central Sector in the district. According to the census 2011, there are 10629 industrial units registered under SSI/MMSE and 396 units among these are promoted by Scheduled castes, 83 Scheduled Tribes and the remaining units by the general category. About 1,000 people are aided annually under a self-employment program. There are KINFRA food-processing and IT industrial estates in Kakkancherry,[24] Inkel SME Park at Panakkad for Small and Medium Industries and a rubber plant and industrial estate in Payyanad. MALCOSPIN, The Malappuram Spinning Mills Limited is one of the oldest industrial establishments in the district under state Government. Wood-related industries are common in Kottakkal, Edavanna, Vaniyambalam, Karulai, Nilambur and Mampad. Sawmills, furniture manufacturers and the timber trade are the most important businesses in the district. Employees' State Insurance has its branch office at Malappuram.[18]

Flora and faunaEdit

The Nilambur forests.

Malappuram district contains abundant wildlife and a number of small hills, forests, rivers and streams flowing to the west, backwaters and paddy, arecanut, cashew nut, pepper, ginger, pulses, coconut, banana, tapioca, and rubber plantations. The world's oldest Teak plantation is located at Nilambur in the district. Nilambur is also known for the Teak Museum. A lot of Bamboo trees can also be seen near to the Nilambur Teak Plantations. Tirur Vettila, a type of Betel found in Tirur, has obtained GI tag. [25] Out of the 3554 area of the district, 1034 (29%) comprises forest area. It may be denser or less dense.[26] The northeast part of the district has a vast forest area of 758.87 km2. In this, 325.33 km2 is reserved forests and the rest is vested forests. Of these, 80% is deciduous whereas the rest is evergreen. The forest area is mainly concentrated in the Nilambur Taluk, which shares its boundary with the hilly district of Wayanad, Western Ghats and the hilly areas (Nilgiris) of Tamil Nadu. The trees like Teak, Rosewood, and Mahogany can abundantly be seen in this Nilambur forest area. Bamboo hills can be seen anywhere in the forest. A variety of animals, birds, and reptiles are found in the forests. Forest products like honey, medicinal herbs, and spices are also collected from here. The forests are protected by two divisions- Nilambur north and Nilambur south. About 50 Acre of Mangroves forest is found in Vallikunnu, located in the coastal area of the district.[27]


Malappuram's temperature is almost steady throughout the year. It has a tropical climate. Malappuram has significant rainfall in most of the months, with a short dry season. According to Köppen and Geiger, this climate is classified as Am. The average annual temperature in Malappuram is 27.3 °C. In a year, the average rainfall is 2,952 millimetres (116.2 in). Summer usually runs from March until May; the monsoon begins by June and ends by September. Malappuram receives both southwest and northeast monsoons. Winter is from December to February.[28]

Climate data for Malappuram
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Average high °C (°F) 32.0
Average low °C (°F) 21.8
Average precipitation mm (inches) 1
Source: [29]


In the 2011 census, the district had a population of 4,112,920.

YearPop.±% p.a.

General featuresEdit

Malappuram is the most populous district of Kerala. As of census 2011, 12.31% of the total population of Kerala resides in Malappuram. It is also the 48th most populous of India's 640 districts, with a population density of 1,157 inhabitants per square kilometre (3,000/sq mi). Its population-growth rate from 2001 to 2011 was 13.39 percent. Malappuram has a sex ratio of 1098 women to 1000 men, and its literacy rate is 93.57 percent, which is almost equal to the average literacy rate of the state (93.91%). Out of the total Malappuram population for 2011 census, 44.18 percent lives in urban regions of district. That is, the urbanized percent of Malappuram is 44.18%. In 2011, Children under 0-6 formed 13.96 percent of Malappuram District compared to 15.21 percent of 2001. Child Sex Ratio as per census 2011 was 965 compared to 960 of census 2001. According to the census 2011, only 0.02% of the total population of the district is houseless.[31]

As of 2011 Indian Census Malappuram had the highest number of child marriages in Kerala.[32] However this rate is negligible with comparison to the average child marriage rate of India.


Religions of Malappuram (2011)[33]

  Islam (70.24%)
  Hinduism (27.60%)
  Christianity (1.98%)
  Others or none (0.16%)

Malappuram is the only Muslim-majority district in South India. The Mappilas are the most prominent group among the people of Malappuram.The Hindu temples and Mappila mosques of the region are known for their colorful festivals. Religions practised in the district include Islam, Hinduism, Christianity, and other minor religions.[34]


Malayalam is the district's principal language. Minority Dravidian languages are Allar (350 speakers)[35] and Aranadan, kept alive by the low education level of its 200 speakers.[36] Tamil is also been spoke by a very small fraction of people. According to the census 2011, the percents of the mother tongue of the total population is as follows:

Administration systemEdit

Malappuram Collectorate, the headquarters of the revenue administration of the district.

Malappuram Revenue district has two divisions: Tirur and Perinthalmanna. In these two divisions there are 138 villages included in 7 talukas. For the sake of rural administration, 94 Gram Panchayats are comprised in 15 Block Panchayats, which together form the Malappuram District Panchayat. Besides this in order to perform urban administration better, 12 municipal towns are there. For the representation of Malappuram in Kerala Niyamasabha, there are 16 Niyamasabha constituencies in the district. These 16 are included in 3 Lok Sabha constituencies.[38]

Taluks and VillagesEdit

Malappuram district is divided into 138 villages which together form 7 taluks.[39]

Taluk-wise Demographics of Malappuram Taluk Area (in[40] Population
Population density (per (2011) Villages[41]
1 Eranad 491* 581,512* 1185* 23
2 Nilambur 1343 574,059 427 21
3 Perinthalmanna 506 606,396 1199 24
4 Tirur 448 928,672 2074 30
5 Tirurangadi 281* 631,906* 2253* 17
6 Kondotty 254* 410,577* 1613* 12
7 Ponnani 200 379,798 1896 11
* The statistics of newly formed Kondotty Taluk (in 2013) is obtained by co-ordinating the village-level statistics of the villages included in later Kondotty Taluk, published in Census 2011. The data of Tirurangadi and Eranad Taluks, from which Kondotty Taluk was formed in 2013, are modified by excluding the data of later-Kondotty villages.

Eranad TalukEdit

Eranad Taluk comprises 23 villages. They are Malappuram, Panakkad, Melmuri, Payyanad, Elankur, Karakunnu, Trikkalangode, Kavanoor, Areekode, Vettilappara, Urangattiri, Kizhuparamba, Pulpatta, Narukara, Perakamanna, Pookkottur, Vettikattiri, Pandikkad, Chembrasseri, Anakkayam, Panthalloor, Edavanna, and Manjeri.[41]

Nilambur TalukEdit

Nilambur Taluk comprises 21 villages. Since most of Nilambur is the jungle and hilly area, this Taluk has the least population density in the district. The villages included in the Taluk are Vazhikkadavu, Nilambur, Edakkara, Pullipadam, Karulai, Chungathara, Thiruvali, Karuvarakundu, Amarambalam, Mampad, Kurumbalangode, Akampadam, Tuvvur, Porur, Vellayur, Kalikavu, Kerala Estate, Pothukal, Moothedam, Wandoor, and Chokkad.[41]

Perinthalmanna TalukEdit

Perinthalmanna Taluk has 24 villages. They are Nenmini, Angadippuram, Valambur, Vadakkangara, Moorkkanad, Aliparamba, Puzhakkattiri, Kuruva, Thazhekkod, Koottilangadi, Pathaikara, Edappatta, Mankada, Perinthalmanna, Kuruvambalam, Kodur, Elamkulam, Keezhattur, Melattur, Vettathur, Karyavattam, Arakkuparamba, Anamangad, and Pulamanthole.[41]

Tirur TalukEdit

Tirur Taluk is the most populous Taluk in the district. It has 30 villages. They are Tirur, Thalakkad, Triprangode, Mangalam, Vettom, Purathur, Thirunavaya, Ananthavoor, Thrikkandiyur, Tanalur, Tanur, Ozhur, Ponmundam, Cheriyamundam, Valavannur, Kalpakanchery, Perumanna, Niramaruthur, Pariyapuram, Kottakkal, Ponmala, Athavanad, Kattiparuthi, Edayur, Irimbiliyam, Melmuri, Kurumbathur, Marakkara, Kuttippuram, and Naduvattom.[41]

Tirurangadi TalukEdit

The historically important Tirurangadi Taluk Office.

Tirurangadi Taluk comprises 17 villages. They are Parappur, Abdu Rahiman Nagar, Thenhipalam, Peruvallur, Oorakam, Nannambra, Vengara, Kannamangalam, Othukkungal, Vallikunnu, Moonniyur, Ariyallur, Tirurangadi, Neduva, Parappanangadi, Thennala, and Edarikode.[41]

Kondotty TalukEdit

Kondotty Taluk is the newest Taluk in Malappuram district. Kondotty Taluk was formed by bifurcating the then Eranad Taluk. It was declared by former chief minister Oommen Chandy on 23 December 2013. The Taluk comprises 12 villages. They are Cheekkode, Cherukavu, Chelembra, Kondotty, Kuzhimanna, Morayur, Muthuvallur, Nediyiruppu, Pulikkal, Vazhakkad, Pallikkal, and Vazhayoor.[41]

Ponnani TalukEdit

Ponnani Taluk is the least populous Taluk in the district. It is also the smallest Taluk in the district. It is a coastal Taluk. It comprises only 11 villages. They are Ponnani Nagaram, Maranchery, Nannamukku, Alamkode, Vattamkulam, Edappal, Perumpadappa, Thavanur, Ezhuvathiruthy, Veliyankode, and Kalady.[41]

State Assembly ConstituenciesEdit

Before the 2008 delimitation, the district had 12 assembly constituencies. As a result of delimitation, one among them, Kuttippuram assembly constituency defuncted and five new constituencies came into existence- Eranad, Vengara, Vallikunnu, Kottakkal, and Thavanur. Now the district has the highest number of assembly constituencies in the state - 16.[42] Among these, 12 seats are bagged by the UDF and 4 are bagged by the LDF since 2016 Kerala Legislative Assembly election.[43]

Niyamasabha constituencies in Malappuram district


 IUML    CPI (M)    INC    Independent Constituency Reserved for
Local segments Member of the
14th Niyamasabha
Party Alliance
33 Kondotty None T. V. Ibrahim IUML   UDF
34 Eranad None P. K. Basheer IUML   UDF
35 Nilambur None P. V. Anvar Independent   LDF
36 Wandoor SC A. P. Anil Kumar INC   UDF
37 Manjeri None M. Ummer IUML   UDF
38 Perinthalmanna None Manjalamkuzhi Ali IUML   UDF
39 Mankada None T. A. Ahmed Kabir IUML   UDF
40 Malappuram None P. Ubaidulla IUML   UDF
41 Vengara None K. N. A. Khader IUML   UDF
42 Vallikunnu None P. Abdul Hameed IUML   UDF
43 Tirurangadi None P. K. Abdu Rabb IUML   UDF
44 Tanur None V. Abdurahiman Independent   LDF
45 Tirur None C. Mammutty IUML   UDF
46 Kottakkal None K. K. Abid Hussain Thangal IUML   UDF
47 Thavanur None K.T. Jaleel Independent   LDF
48 Ponnani None P. Sreeramakrishnan CPI(M)   LDF

Parliamentary ConstituenciesEdit

Eranad, Nilambur and Wandoor Niyamasabha constituencies are included in the Wayanad (Lok Sabha constituency) whereas Tirurangadi, Tanur, Tirur, Kottakkal, Thavanur and Ponnani form a major part of Ponnani (Lok Sabha constituency). The remaining seven assembly constituencies together form the Malappuram (Lok Sabha constituency).


 IUML    INC Constituency Reserved for
Member of the
17th Lok Sabha
Party Alliance
4 Wayanad (minor portion) None Rahul Gandhi INC   UDF
6 Malappuram None P. K. Kunhalikutty IUML   UDF
7 Ponnani (major portion) None E. T. Mohammed Basheer IUML   UDF



Malappuram is served by Calicut International Airport (IATA: CCJ, ICAO: VOCL) located at Karipur in the Malappuram district. The airport started operation in April 1988. It has two terminals, one for domestic flights and second for international flights.[44] There are direct buses to the airport for transportation. Other than buses, Taxis, Auto Rickshaws available for transportation.


The first Railway Station of Kerala at Tirur (opened in 1861)

The total length of the railway line in the District is 142 km. [45] The Malappuram City is served by Angadipuram railway station (17 km away), Parappanangadi Railway Station and Tirur Railway Station both (26 km, 40 minute drive away). Other railway stations are Kuttippuram railway station, Thanur railway station, Tirunavaya railway station, and Nilambur Road railway station. Among these, Tirur Railway Station (opened in 1861) was the first railway station in Kerala. However, the Ministry of Railways has included the railway line connecting Kozhikode-Malappuram-Angadipuram in its Vision 2020 as a socially desirable railway line. Multiple surveys have been done on the line already. Indian Railway computerized reservation counter is available at Friends Janasevana Kendram, Down Hill. Reservation for any train can be done from here.


The Bus stand in Tirur

There are four KSRTC bus stands in the district- Malappuram, Ponnani, Perinthalmanna, and Edappal. 2 National highways pass through the district- NH 66 and NH 966. NH 66 reaches the district through Ramanattukara and connects the cities/towns including Tirurangadi, Kakkad, Kottakkal, Valanchery, Kuttippuram, and Ponnani and goes out from the district through Chavakkad. The major cities those are connected through NH 966 include Kondotty (Karipur Airport), Malappuram, and Perinthalmanna. The State Highways passing through the district are SH 23, SH 28, SH 34, SH 39, SH 53, Hill Highway, SH 60, SH 62, SH 65, SH 69, SH 70, SH 71, SH 72, and SH 73. The length of road maintained by Kerala PWD in the district is 2,680 km. In this, roads of 2,305 km are various district roads. The remaining 375km consists of the State Highways.[46] Distances from major places to Malappuram in kilometres are given below:

City/Town Distance (km) City/Town Distance (km) City/Town Distance (km) City/Town Distance (km) City/Town Distance (km)
Kozhikode 49 Thrissur 79 Palakkad 85 Kalpetta 98 Kannur 137
Kochi 161 Alappuzha 210 Kottayam 213 Idukki 223 Kasaragod 225
Pathanamthitta 260 Kollam 295 Thiruvananthapuram 355 Coimbatore 134 Ooty 135
Mysore 193 Kodagu 210 Mangalore 281 Bangalore 341 Kanyakumari 455
Chennai 641 Hyderabad 914 Mumbai 1211 Kolkata 2278 New Delhi 2500

Major citiesEdit

Malappuram has the second highest number of municipalities in the state (12) followed by the Ernakulam which has 13.

List of municipal towns/cities in Malappuram district
No. Municipal town Taluk Wards Images No. Municipal town Taluk Wards Images
1 Ponnani Ponnani 51   7 Tirurangadi Tirurangadi 39  
2 Manjeri Eranad 50   8 Tirur Tirur 38  
3 Parappanangadi Tirurangadi 45   9 Perinthalmanna Perinthalmanna 34  
4 Tanur Tirur 44   10 Nilambur Nilambur 33  
5 Malappuram Eranad 40   11 Valanchery Tirur 33  
6 Kondotty Kondotty 40


12 Kottakkal Tirur 32  

Educational institutionsEdit

The district has the highest number of schools in Kerala as per the school statistics of 2019-20. There are 898 Lower primary schools[49], 363 Upper primary schools[50], 355 High schools[51], 248 Higher secondary schools[52], and 27 Vocational Higher secondary schools[53] in the district. Hence there are 1620 schools in the district. [54]Besides these, there are 120 CBSE schools and 3 ICSE schools in the district. 554 government schools, 810 Aided schools, and 1 unaided school, recognized by the Government of Kerala have been digitalized.[55]In the academic year 2019-20, the total number of students studying in the schools recognized by Government of Kerala is 739,966 - 407,690 in the aided schools, 245,445 in the government schools, and 86,831 in the recognized unaided schools.[56]

The district also plays a significant role in the higher education sector of Kerala. The district is home to two of the main universities in the state- the University of Calicut centered at the Thenhipalam which was established in 1968 as the first university in the Malabar region and the second university in Kerala,[57] and the Thunchath Ezhuthachan Malayalam University centered at Tirur which was established in the year 2012.[58] One of the three off-campus centres of Aligarh Muslim University (AMU) is situated near Perinthalmanna in the district, which was established by AMU in 2010.[59][60] The Government Medical College, Manjeri, established in 2013, is the apex medical college in the district.[61] The Govt Ayurveda Research Institute for Mental Disease at Pottippara near Kottakkal is the only one Ayurveda mental hospital in Kerala.

Culture and CuisineEdit

The Mappila dance forms like Oppana, Kolkali, Duffmuttu, and Aravana muttu are popular in the district. Moyinkutty Vaidyar, the most renowned Mappila paattu poet was born at Kondotty in the district. He is the only Mahakavi (a title for 'great poet') of Mappila songs. The currently adopted Malayalam alphabet was first accepted by Thunchath Ezhuthachan, who was born in Tirur and is known as the father of modern Malayalam language. Arabi Malayalam script took its birth in Ponnani. Arabi Malayalam script was widely used in the district in the late 19th and early 20th century CE. The district has also given its own deposits to Kathakali, the classical artform of Kerala, and Ayurveda. The only Government Ayurveda Mental Hospital of Kerala functions at Kottakkal in the district. Kottakkal is also home to the Arya Vaidya Sala, known for its heritage and expertise in the Ayurveda. Kottakkal Chandrasekharan, Kottakkal Sivaraman, and Kottakkal Madhu were famous Kathakali artists hailed from Kottakkal Natya Sangam established by Vaidyaratnam P. S. Warrier in Kottakkal.

Since the district has a higher population of Mappilas, the Mappila cuisine is common in Malappuram. One of the main elements of this cuisine is Pathiri, a pancake made of rice flour. Variants of Pathiri include Neypathiri (made with ghee), Poricha Pathiri (fried rather than baked), Meen Pathiri (stuffed with fish), and Irachi Pathiri (stuffed with beef). Spices like Black pepper, Cardamom, and Clove are widely used in the cuisine of Malappuram. The main item used in the festivals is the Malabar style of Biryani. Sadhya can also be seen in marriage and festival occasions. Ponnani region of the district has a wide variety of indigenous dishes. Snacks such as Arikadukka, Chattipathiri, Muttamala, Pazham Nirachathu, and Unnakkaya have their own style in Ponnani. Besides these food items, other common traditional items of Kerala also make Malappuram cuisine delicious.[62]

Notable people from MalappuramEdit

E. M. S. Namboodiripad, the first Chief Minister of Kerala.

Demand for bifurcation of MalappuramEdit

For a few years, the demand for bifurcating the district into two districts by carving out a new one called Tirur district, centered at Tirur is being strengthened.[101] They argued that it is imperative from the development perspective to split the district, with double the population and size of Alappuzha district, into two. No other district in Kerala has seven talukas, 94 village panchayats, and 12 municipalities. As for its extent, if one travels from Perumbadappu which borders Thrissur district to Vazhikkadavu bordering Tamil Nadu, normally it takes four hours to cover that distance of 126 km. They also point out that the problems in the health and educational sectors that require solutions are not trivial. The issue was raised again by the IUML MLA KNA Khader in 2019.[101] The demand was to bifurcate the existing Malappuram district into two districts by carving out a new one called Tirur district from it[101] Many including Veteran Congress leader Aryadan Muhammad,IUML district secretary UA Latheef,CPI(M) had come out strongly against the bifurcation of Malapuram.[102][103]

However, the demand was rejected by the two successive governments who ruled Kerala in 2013 and in 2019.[102][103] But, the studies regarding bifurcation of the district is still there in the consideration of the Government of Kerala.


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External linksEdit