Demographics of Kerala

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Location of Kerala in India
Location of Kerala in India

Kerala (കേരളം) is a state in south-western India. Most of Kerala's 33.3 million people (in 2011) are of Malayali (മലയാളി ) (Malayalam language speaking) ethnicity. Most of the Malayalam and English speaking Keralites derive their ancestry from Dravidian and Aryan communities that settled in Kerala and intermixed with each other and existing populations.[1] Additional ancestries derive from several centuries of contact with non-Indian lands, whereby people of Arab, Jewish, and other ethnicities settled in Kerala. Many of these immigrants intermarried with native Malayalam speakers.[2][3] A tiny amount of Muslims thus take lineage from Arab settlers mixed with local population.

Malayalam (മലയാളം) is Kerala's official language and is spoken by at least 96% of the people of Kerala; the next most common language is Tamil, spoken mainly by Tamil workers from Tamil Nadu and the local Kerala Iyers. Tulu and Kannada is spoken in some parts of the northern districts of Kasaragod, adjoining Karnataka. In addition, Kerala is home to 321,000 indigenous tribal Adivasis (1.10% of the populace).[4] Some 63% of tribals reside in the eastern districts of Wayanad (where 35.82% are tribals), Palakkad (11.05%), and Idukki (15.66%).[5] These groups, including the Irulars, Kurumbars, and Mudugars,[6] speak their own native languages.[7][8][9] Cholanaikkan tribe in Silent Valley National Park were contacted only in the 1970s and they are the most isolated tribe. There were 64,008 Konkani speakers in Kerala in 1991.

Population[edit]

Population density of Kerala
Kerala's districts, shaded by population density (inhabitants per km².
Kerala's districts, shaded by population density.
Source: (GOK 2001).

Kerala is home to 2.76% of India's people, and — at 859 persons per km²;[10] its land is three times as densely settled as the rest of India. However, Kerala's population growth rate is far lower than the national average. Whereas Kerala's population more than doubled between 1951 and 1991 — adding 15.6 million people to reach a total of 29.1 million residents in 1991 — the population stood at 31.8 million by 2001 and 33.3 million in 2011.[10] Kerala's people are most densely settled in the coastal region, leaving the eastern hills and mountains comparatively sparsely populated.[11]

Hinduism is followed by the majority of Keralites (56.2%).Kerala is home to Hindu saints and swamis of all castes. Jagatguru Sree Adi Shankaracharya, Sree Narayana Guru, Sree Chattambi Swamikal and Vaikunda Swami were the first among the saints of Kerala. The major religions followed in Kerala are Hinduism (56.2% — Hinduism of Kerala), Islam (24.7%) and Christianity (19.0%).[12] Kerala also had a tiny Jewish population until recently, said to date from 587 BC when they fled the occupation of Jerusalem by Nebuchadnezzar.[13] The 2001 Indian census recorded only 51 Jews in Kerala. The synagogue in Kochi is the oldest in the Commonwealth of Nations. The state has many famous Temples, Mosques, and Churches. The oldest church in India is found in Kerala, believed to be established by St. Thomas the disciple of Jesus Christ.

Social development[edit]

Kerala ranks highest in India with respect to social development indices such as elimination of poverty, primary education and healthcare.[citation needed] This resulted from significant efforts begun in 1911 by the erstwhile Cochin and Travancore states to boost healthcare and education among the people and aided by the Christian Missionaries. This central focus — unusual in India — was then maintained after Kerala's post-independence inauguration as a state.[14] Thus, Kerala has the highest literacy rate in India of 93.91% (2011);[15] and life expectancy is now the highest in India. However, the same is true of Kerala's unemployment and suicide rates. As per the 2011 census, Kerala and Puducherry are the only states in India with a female-to-male ratio higher than 0.99. The ratio for Kerala is 1.084 — 1084 females per 1000 males — while the national figure is 0.940.[10] It is also the only state in India to have sub-replacement fertility. UNICEF and the World Health Organization (WHO) designated Kerala the world's first "baby-friendly state" via its "Baby Friendly Hospital Initiative". The state is also known for Ayurveda, a traditional system of medicine — this traditional expertise is currently drawing increasing numbers of medical tourists. However, drawbacks to this situation includes the population's steady aging — indeed, 11.2% of Keralites are age 60 or over.[14]

Kerala's unusual socioeconomic and demographic situation was summarized by author and environmentalist Bill McKibben:[16]

Kerala, a state in India, is a bizarre anomaly among developing nations, a place that offers real hope for the future of the Third World. Though not much larger than Maryland, Kerala has a population as big as California's and a per capita annual income of less than $300 mn dollar. But its infant mortality rate is very low, its literacy rate among the highest on Earth, and its birthrate below America's and falling faster. Kerala's residents live nearly as long as Americans or Europeans. Though mostly a land of paddy-covered plains, statistically Kerala stands out in social development; there's truly no place like it.

Emigration[edit]

As of 2011, a total of 2,280,000 Keralites reside outside India. The majority of them are Muslims (45%), although Christians (37.5%) and Hindus (17.5%) are also significant in population. Largest populations are found in UAE (883,313) and USA (680,076).[17]

As of 2011, the major concentrations of expat Keralites are in the following nations:[18]

Diversity[edit]

There are more than 1,000,000 migrants living in Kerala,[19] mostly from Bangladesh and West Bengal, constituting more than 3% of the population. There are also migrants from Bihar, Jharkhand, Chhattisgarh, Orissa, and the North East.[20] In some places like Perumbavoor they outnumber the locals.[21] Some alarmist have even wrote that "of late, Kerala has been hearing more Bengali than its own local language",[22] which is a huge exaggeration, since there are very few migrants in Northern and Southern Kerala. Most of the migrants tend to concentrate around central Kerala, especially in Kochi (Notable exceptions would be Trivandrum and Kozhikode. In Kozhikode, northern immigrants constitute more than 8% of the total population, at 35,000).[19]

Studies indicate that by the time of 2016 state elections, migrants will become a crucial voting block in many of the constituencies in Thiruvananthapuram, Kochi, Kozhikode, Thrissur and Kannur.[23]

Additional demographic information[edit]

Nationality[edit]

Indian

Population[edit]

33,387,677 (2011 Census)
Males : 16,021,290
Females : 20,051,200

Most Populous urban agglomerations in the Kerala[edit]

The following is a list of most populous urban agglomerations in the Kerala state of India. Population statistics indicated in this article as of 2001 census.[24] Note that this is a list of metropolitan population and does not indicate the city populations.

List[edit]

Rank UA Population (2011) Population (2001) District
1 Kochi 2,117,990 1,355,972 Ernakulam
2 Kozhikode 2,030,519 1,015,681 Kozhikode
3 Thrissur 1,854,783 330,122 Thrissur
4 Malappuram 1,698,645 170,409 Malappuram
5 Thiruvananthapuram 1,687,406 1,055,024 Thiruvananthapuram
6 Kannur 1,642,892 498,207 Kannur
7 Kollam 1,110,005 380,091 Kollam
8 Cherthala 455,408 141,558 Alappuzha
9 Kayamkulam 427,091 68,585 Alappuzha
10 Kottayam 357,533 172,878 Kottayam
11 Palakkad 293,566 197,369 Palakkad
12 Alappuzha 241,072 282,675 Alappuzha
13 Ottappalam 238,238 49,242 Palakkad
14 Kanhangad 229,706 129,367 Kasaragod
15 Kasaragod 192,761 75,968 Kasaragod
16 Changanassery 127,971 51,967 Kottayam
17 Chalakkudy 114,901 48,380 Thrissur

Class I Cities of Kerala[edit]

Kerala has seven million-plus cities: Kochi, Kozhikode, Thrissur, Malappuram, Thiruvananthapuram, Kannur and Kollam. Over a third of Keralites live in these large cities (a higher percentage than any other state), and over half the population lives in urban centres.[25]

According to Census of India 2001,[26] following are the list of Class I Major Towns classified as Urban Agglomerations..

City/Town Population Rank
Kochi 1,355,972 1
Thiruvananthapuram 889,635 2
Kozhikode 880,247 3
Thrissur 498,207 4
Kollam 380,091 5
Kannur 330,122 6
Palakkad 282,675 7
Alappuzha 197,369 8
Kottayam 172,878 9
Malappuram 170,409 10
Cherthala 141,558 11
Guruvayoor 138,681 12
Kasaragod 129,367 13
Vadakara 124,083 14

According to World Gazetteer[27] population calculation for the year 2010, five of the top 100 most populous metropolitan areas in India belong to Kerala. They are Kochi, Thiruvananthapuram, Kozhikode, Kannur and Kollam ranking 26, 43, 46, 73 and 86 respectively.

Ethnic groups[edit]

The great majority of residents of Kerala are Malayalis, but there are many smaller ethnic groups including Tuluvas, Tamils, Kannadigas and Konkanis. In addition, as of early 2013 there are close to 2.5 million (7.5% of state population) migrant workers from other states of India in Kerala.[28]

Religion/Caste Communities[edit]

Ethnic groups in Hindus

Ezhavas - 22.9%
Nairs - 12.88%[29]
Pulaya - 3.27%[30]
Brahmins - 1.59%[29]
Hindu Tribals - 1.07%[31]
Cheruman - 0.99%[30]
Kuravar - 0.84%[30]
Other SC - 4.71%[30]
Viswakarmas - 0.3%[29]
Ambalavasi - 0.2%[29]
vanikavaisya - 0.2%[29]
Others (Dheevara, etc.) - 5.00%

Ethnic groups in Christians

Syrian Christians (Including Jacobite, Syro-Malabar Catholic, Syro-Malankara Catholic, Mar Thoma , Malankara Orthodox,Chaldean, & few CSI) - 17.25%[32]
Latin Catholics - 3.28%[32]
Christian Tribals - 0.07%[31]
Nadars - 1.04%[32]
Other Christian - 1.35%[32]

Muslims 22.7% (2001 census).

Total - 100.00%[edit]

Districts Population Percent Hindus Percent Christians Percent Muslims
Thiruvananthapuram 3,307,284 65.19% 19.44% 15.37%
Kollam 2,629,703 61.23% 19.36% 19.41%
Pathanamthitta 1,195,537 46.35% 44.07% 9.58%
Alapuzha 2,121,943 66.16% 17.96% 16.88%
Kottayam 1,979,274 43.37% 51.65% 5.98%
Idukki 1,107,453 45.24% 41.56% 13.20%
Ernakulam 3,279,860 40.59% 38.84% 20.57%
Thrissur 3,110,327 52.31% 26.24% 22.45%
Palakkad 2,810,892 66.92% 6.18% 26.90%
Malappuram 4,110,956 28.44% 4.72% 66.84%
Kozhikkode 3,089,543 55.04% 7.43% 37.53%
Wayanad 816,558 49.44% 21.57% 28.72%
Kannur 2,525,637 59.51% 08.84% 32.65%
Kasargod 1,302,600 58.57% 07.05% 34.31%[33]

Age structure[edit]

0-6 years: 3322247 or 9.95% (male 1695935/1626312 female )(2011 census)
0-14 years: 23.9%
15-59 years: 64.3%
60 years and over:11.8%

Median age[edit]

Year :1961 1971 1981 1991 2001
Total:19.28 19.39 21.81 24.36 28.87
Male:
Female:

Population growth rate[edit]

4.91% (2001-2011)[34]

Birth rate[edit]

17.1 births/1,000 population (1994-2001 est.) [4]
  • In 2007, 45.88% of all live births were Hindus, 33.71% Muslims and 18.02% Christians.[35]
  • In 2008, 45.04% of all live births were Hindus, 36.32% Muslims and 17.58% Christians.[36]
  • In 2010, 45.03% of all live births were Hindus, 38.26% Muslims and 16.26% Christians.[37]

Birth Rate was 17.1 in 1994-2001 (20.3 in 1984-1990 & 25.0 in 1974-1980) . Pathanamthitta (14.5 in 1994-2001, 17.2 in 1984-1990 & NA in 1974-1980) had the lowest TBR and Malappuram(22.4, 29.5 & 33.6) had the highest TBR.

According to the 2011 Census, the Thiruvalla taluk is having the lowest birth rate and the Tirurangadi taluk is having the highest birth rate.[38]

Lowest Birth Rate (2011):

  1. Thiruvalla - 10.63 per 1,000
  2. Mallappally - 10.69 per 1,000
  3. Kozhenchery - 10.86 per 1,000
  4. Chengannur - 10.93 per 1,000
  5. Adoor - 11.09 per 1,000

Highest Birth Rate (2011):

  1. Tirurangadi - 19.99 per 1,000
  2. Ernad - 19.68 per 1,000
  3. Perinthalmanna - 19.43 per 1,000
  4. Tirur - 19.16 per 1,000
  5. Nilambur - 18.34 per 1,000

Death rate[edit]

7.0 deaths/1,000 population (2006-10)[39]
  • In 2007, 61.55% of the deaths were reported from Hindus, 17.50% from Muslims and, 19.75% from Christians.[35]
  • In 2008, 61.01% of the deaths were reported from Hindus, 17.82% from Muslims and, 20.06% from Christians.[36]
  • In 2010, 60.79% of the deaths were reported from Hindus, 18.31% from Muslims and, 20.36% from Christians.[37]

Net migration rate[edit]

(-)3.1 migrant(s)/1,000 population (1991 est.)

Of the emigrants from Kerala, 42.2% were Muslims, 36.6% were Hindus and 21.2% were Christians in 1992-93. The most preferred destination was USA (37.8%), followed by UAE (25.9%), Other Gulf countries (13.0%), Oman (11.8%), Other Countries (7.5%) and Saudi Arabia(3.8%). [5]

Sex ratio[edit]

Total population : 1084 Females/1000 Male
Age 0-6 : 959 Females/1000 Males

Infant mortality rate[edit]

Total: 12 deaths/1,000 live births (2011-2012)

Maternal mortality rate[edit]

Total: 1.3 deaths/1,000 live births (1990)

Life expectancy at birth[edit]

74%

Total fertility rate[edit]

1.70 children born/woman (2001 Cen)

In 1991, Kerala had the lowest TFR (Children born per women) in the whole of India. Hindus had a TFR of 1.66, Christians had 1.78 and Muslims had 2.97. In 2000, the TFR was 1.73 with Muslims having 2.28, Nairs having a TFR of 1.47 and Syrian Christians having TFR of 1.55. TFR for Scheduled Castes was 1.52 in 1997-98 and 1.37 in 1992-93. The lowest Fertility rate recorded anywhere in India is TFR of 1.17 for Vettuvan caste in Kerala. [6]

HIV/AIDS[edit]

HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate: 0.32% (2005 est.)
HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS: NA
HIV/AIDS - deaths: NA

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Social and cultural history of Kerala by A. Sreedhara Menon p47,p61
  2. ^ Western Influence on Malayalam Language and Literature by K. M. George, p2, ISBN 81-260-0413-4 Google book
  3. ^ Caste, Class and Catholicism in India 1789-1914 by Kenneth Ballhatchet, p2, ISBN 0-7007-1095-7
  4. ^ (Kalathil 2004, p. 10).
  5. ^ (Kalathil 2004, p. 12).
  6. ^ (Kalathil 2004, pp. 13–14).
  7. ^ (Kalathil 2004, pp. 30–32).
  8. ^ (Kalathil 2004, p. 37).
  9. ^ (Kalathil 2004, p. 39).
  10. ^ a b c "Census of India : Provisional Population Totals India : Paper1 : Census 2011". Censusindia.gov.in. Retrieved 2014-08-16. 
  11. ^ (GOK 2005b).
  12. ^ Indian Census
  13. ^ Edna Fernandes, The Last Jews of Kerala, Skyhorse Publishing, 2008
  14. ^ a b (Varma 2005).
  15. ^ [1][dead link]
  16. ^ (McKibben 2006).
  17. ^ "Migration From Kerala Growing Steadily, Shows Study". Daijiworld.com. Retrieved 2014-08-16. 
  18. ^ "A Gulf without Keralites could soon be a reality". Emirates 24/7. 2012-10-18. Retrieved 2014-08-16. 
  19. ^ a b [2][dead link]
  20. ^ "In Migrants’ Own Country". Indian Express. 2011-07-24. Retrieved 2014-08-16. 
  21. ^ "No Malayalam please, we're Bongs". The Telegraph (Kolkata, India). 10 August 2008. 
  22. ^ http://www.premiuminvestments.in/corporate-inklings/57556p104/57503.html
  23. ^ Rakesh, K.M. (20 April 2011). "Missing voters". The Telegraph (Kolkata, India). 
  24. ^ "ALPHABETICAL LIST OF TOWNS AND THEIR POPULATION". 
  25. ^ "One in 3 Keralites lives in big cities". The Times Of India. 28 October 2011. 
  26. ^ Office of the Registrar General and Census Commissioner Government of India (2001). Census of India 2001:List of Towns (PDF). pp. 1–4. Retrieved 2006-01-12. 
  27. ^ "India: metropolitan areas". World Gazetteer. Retrieved 17 February 2010. 
  28. ^ PTI (2013-02-16). "Migrant worker population in Kerala touches 2.5 m | Business Line". Thehindubusinessline.com. Retrieved 2014-08-16. 
  29. ^ a b c d e Socio-Economic Survey 1968 http://www.jstor.org/pss/4367366
  30. ^ a b c d http://censusindia.gov.in/Tables_Published/SCST/dh_sc_kerala.pdf
  31. ^ a b http://censusindia.gov.in/Tables_Published/SCST/dh_st_kerala.pdf
  32. ^ a b c d . JSTOR 2800388.  Missing or empty |title= (help)
  33. ^ Menon, Adhi. "Religion in Kerala". prokerala. 
  34. ^ "Kerala Census: Child population declines". The Hindu. 6 Jan 2014. 
  35. ^ a b http://www.ecostat.kerala.gov.in/pdf/reports/vital_stat/bulletin_07.pdf
  36. ^ a b http://www.cr.lsgkerala.gov.in/Docs/AnnualVitalStatisticalReport_2008.pdf
  37. ^ a b http://www.ecostat.kerala.gov.in/docs/pdf/reports/vs/vsreport2010.pdf
  38. ^ [3][dead link]
  39. ^ "Death statistics – Crude death rate in India". Indiastat.com. Retrieved 2014-08-16.