Coimbatore

Coimbatore District is a district in the Kongu Nadu region of the state of Tamil Nadu. Coimbatore is the administrative headquarters of the district.It is one of the most industrialized districts and a major textile, industrial, commercial, educational, information technology, healthcare and manufacturing hub of Tamil Nadu.The region is bounded by Tiruppur district in the east, Nilgiris district in the north, Erode district in the north-east, Palghat district and Idukki district of neighboring state of Kerala in the west and south respectively. As of 2011, Coimbatore district had a population of 3,458,045 with a sex-ratio of 1,000 and literacy rate of 84%.

Coimbatore district was part of the historical Kongu Nadu and was ruled by the Cheras as it served as the eastern entrance to the Palakkad Gap, the principal trade route between the west coast and Tamil Nadu.Coimbatore was in the middle of the Roman trade route that extended from Muziris to Arikamedu in South India.The medieval Cholas conquered the Kongu Nadu in the 10th century CE.The region was ruled by Vijayanagara Empire in the 15th century followed by the Nayaks who introduced the Palayakkarar system under which Kongu nadu region was divided into 24 Palayams.In the later part of the 18th century, the Coimbatore region came under the Kingdom of Mysore and following the defeat of Tipu Sultan in the Anglo-Mysore Wars, the British East India Company annexed Coimbatore to the Madras Presidency in 1799. The Coimbatore region played a prominent role in the Second Poligar War (1801) when it was the area of operations of Dheeran Chinnamalai.In 1804, Coimbatore was established as the capital of the newly formed Coimbatore district.The district experienced a textile boom in the early 19th century due to the decline of the cotton industry in Mumbai.Post independence, the district has seen rapid growth due to industrialisation.

The region around Coimbatore was ruled by the Sangam Cheras dyansty and it served as the eastern entrance to the Palakkad Gap, the principal trade route between the west coast and Tamil Nadu.The Kossar tribe mentioned in the second century CE Tamil epic Silappathikaram and other poems in Sangam literature is associated with the Coimbatore region (Kongu Nadu).The region was in the middle of a Roman trade route that extended from Muziris to Arikamedu.The medieval Cholas conquered the Kongu Nadu in the 10th century CE. A Chola highway called Rajakesari Peruvazhi ran through the region.Much of Tamil Nadu came under the rule of the Vijayanagara Empire by the 15th century.In the 1550s, Madurai Nayaks who were the military governors of the Vijaynagara Empire took control of the region. After the Vijayanagara Empire fell in the 17th century, the Madurai Nayaks established their state as an independent kingdom. The Nayaks introduced the Palayakkarar system under which Kongu nadu region was divided into 24 Palayams.

Coimbatore district is in the western part of Tamil Nadu, bordering the state of Kerala. It is surrounded by the Western Ghats mountain range on the west and north, with reserve forests and the (Nilgiri Biosphere Reserve) on the northern side.The Noyyal River runs through Coimbatore and forms the southern boundary of the old city limits.The city sits amidst Noyyal’s basin area and has an extensive tank system fed by the river and rainwater.The eight major tanks/wetland areas of Coimbatore are Singanallur, Valankulam, Ukkadam Periyakulam, Selvampathy, Narasampathi, Krishnampathi, Selvachinthamani, and Kumaraswami tanks.Sanganur pallam, Kovilmedu pallam, Vilankurichi-Singanallur Pallam, Karperayan Koil pallam, Railway feeder roadside drain, Tiruchy-Singanallur Check drain and Ganapathy pallam are some of the streams that drain the city.

According to 2011 census, Coimbatore district had a population of 3,458,045 with a sex-ratio of 1,000 females for every 1,000 males, much above the national average of 929.A total of 319,332 were under the age of six, constituting 163,230 males and 156,102 females. Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes accounted for 15.5% and .82% of the population respectively. The average literacy of the district was 83.98%.The district had a total of 958,035 households. There were a total of 1,567,950 workers: 75,411 cultivators, 201,351 main agricultural laborers, 44,582 in house hold industries, 1,121,908 other workers, 124,698 marginal workers, 4,806 marginal cultivators, 28,675 marginal agricultural laborers, 5,503 marginal workers in household industries and 85,714 other marginal workers.Tamil is the principal official language and Kongu Tamil, a variant of Tamil and English are widely spoken with a small proportion speaking Malayalam, Telugu and Kannada. Hindus formed the majority of the population at 90.08% followed by Muslims at 5.33%, Christians at 4.35% and others at 0.24%.

Coimbatore district is home to Anaimalai Wildlife Sanctuary and National Park. The park and sanctuary are the core of the Nilgiri Biosphere Reserve and is under consideration by UNESCO as part of the Western Ghats World Heritage site.The park is home to a wide variety of flora and fauna typical of the South Western Ghats. There are over 2000 species plants of which about 400 species are of prime medicinal value. The animals in the park include tiger, leopard, sloth bear, elephant, Indian giant flying squirrel. The birds endemic to the Western Ghats residing here include Nilgiri wood pigeon, Nilgiri pipit, Nilgiri flycatcher, Malabar grey hornbill, spot-billed pelican etc. The Amaravathi reservoir and the Amaravathi river are breeding grounds for the mugger crocodiles.

Coimbatore and its people have a reputation for entrepreneurship.Though it is generally considered a traditional, Coimbatore is more diverse and cosmopolitan than other cities in Tamil Nadu.Art, dance and music concerts are held annually during the months of September and December (Tamil calendar month – Margazhi).The World Classical Tamil Conference 2010 was held in Coimbatore.The heavy industrialisationhas also resulted in the growth of trade unions.

Valparai is about 65 km from Pollachi and is situated at an altitude of 3500 feet above the sea level. Valparai is famous for it tea plantations. Anaimalai Wildlife Sanctuary is about 90 km from Coimbatore and is situated at an altitude of 1,400 meters in the Western Ghats near Pollachi. The area of the sanctuary is 958 km2. Top Slip is a point located at an altitude of about 800 feet in the Anaimalai mountain range. Parambikulam Wildlife Sanctuary is located in a valley between the Anaimalai Hills range of Tamil Nadu and the Nelliampathi Hills range of Kerala. The areas hilly and rocky, drained by several rivers, including the Parambikulam, the Sholayar and the Thekkady. Thickly forested with stands of bamboo, sandalwood, rosewood and teak, the sanctuary has some marshy land and scattered patches of grassland.

Parambikulam – Aliyar dam project consists of a series of dams interconnected by tunnels and canals at various elevations to harness the Parambikulam, Aliyar, Nirar, Sholiyar, Thunkadavu, Thenkkadi and Palar rivers, laid for irrigation and power generation. It is located in the Anaimalai Hills range. Seven streams-five flowing westward and two towards the east- have been dammed and their reservoirs interlinked by tunnels. The water is ultimately delivered to the drought-prone areas in the Coimbatore district of Tamil Nadu and the Chittur area of Kerala. Government of Tamil Nadu promotes eco Tourism in Karamadi forest range. The spot is located at an easy destination reachable for people from Coimbatore. It is located near Pillur in Baralikkadu of Karamadai range in Coimbatore district. The way is a hilly terrain enriched with green vegetation with a pleasant climate providing many view points to have awe for these scenes.