|Talukas||Kannur, previously known as Chirakkal Taluk|
|• Municipality Chairperson||Roshini Khalid|
|• Official||Malayalam, English|
|Time zone||IST (UTC+5:30)|
|Telephone code||91 497|
Kannur (IPA: [kaɳɳuːr] ( ) Malayalam: കണ്ണൂര്), also known as Cannanore, is a city in Kannur district in the Indian state of Kerala. It is the administrative headquarters of the District of Kannur and 518 km north of state capital Trivandrum. During British rule in India, Kannur was known by its old name Cannanore (Land of lord Krishna), which is used only by the Indian Railway as of now. It is the largest city of the North Malabar region. Kannur Municipality was established in 1867 and is one of the oldest municipalities in Kerala.
Kannur is one of the Million-Plus urban agglomerations in India with a population of 1,642,892 in 2011, 6th Largest in Kerala and 27th in India  Kannur is known as the Land of Looms and Lore, because of the loom industries functioning in the district and ritualistic folk arts held in temples. Kannur is famous for its pristine beaches, Theyyam, its native performing art, and its handloom industry.
Kannur is of great strategic military importance. It houses one of the 62 military cantonments in the country, the Kannur Cantonment, and is the current headquarters of the Defence Security Corps and Territorial Army’s 122 Infantry Battalion (under Madras Regiment). Ezhimala Naval Academy(INS) is situated 35 km north of Kannur City. It is Asia's largest and the world's third largest naval academy. An Indian Coast Guard Academy is approved to be built at Kannur. This Coast Guard Academy will be built on the banks of Valapattanam River at Irinave, east of Azhikkal. Kannur Cantonment is also one of the important cantonments in India.
The name Kannur may have been derived from Kanathur, an ancient village. Another opinion holds that Kannur was originally a portmanteau derived from two Malayalam words: Kannan (Krishna), a Hindu deity, and "Ur" (place)—making it "the place of Lord Krishna". One support for this theory is that the deity of the Kadalayi Srikrishna Temple was originally installed in a shrine at Kadalayi Kotta in the southeastern part of the present Kannur town. During the British Raj, the city was known as Cannanore, the anglicised form of the Malayalam word Kannur.
Kannur is sometimes identified with Naura in Periplus of the Erythraean Sea. In the Middle Ages, Kannur was a port town of Kolathunadu, which was ruled by the Kolathiris. The city was an important port on the Laccadive Sea and carried on trade with Persia and Arabia in the twelfth and thirteenth centuries. It also served as the British military headquarters on India's west coast until 1887. In conjunction with her sister city, Tellicherry, it was the third largest city on the western coast of British India in the eighteenth century after Bombay and Karachi.
St. Angelo Fort was built in 1505 by Dom Francisco de Almeida, the first Portuguese Viceroy of India. It is situated by the Laccadive Sea about 3 km from Kannur town. In 1507, the fort was besieged by the local ruler in the Siege of Cannanore (1507), nevertheless the Portuguese rule over Cananor (as the spelt it) would last 158 years only to be replaced by the Dutch. The ownership of the fort has changed hands several times. In 1663, the Dutch captured it. They subsequently gave the fort its present appearance. The Dutch sold the fort to the Arakkal royal family in 1772. During this time, the Arakkal sultanate began issuing coins. The British conquered it in 1790 and used it as one of their major military stations on the Malabar Coast. It is fairly well preserved as a protected monument under the Archaeological Survey of India. A painting of this fort and the fishing ferry as a background is on display at the Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam. Kunjali Marakkar's head was removed from his body and exhibited in the fort after his assassination.
During the 17th century, Kannur was the capital city of the only Muslim Sultanate of Kerala, known as Arakkal. During the British Raj, Kannur was part of the Madras province in the District of North Malabar. The Guerrilla war by Pazhassi Raja, the ruler of Kottayam province, against the British had a huge impact in the history of Kannur. Changes in the socio-economic and political sectors in Kerala during the initial decades of 20th century created conditions congenial for the growth of Communist Party.
New strains of thought developed as capitalist transformation laid the foundation for the commencement of social reform movements in various sections of society. At the all India level Vivekananda and others put forward such thoughts. Against this background social reform movements started by Sree Narayana Guru, Ayyankali and others in southern parts of Kerala and by Vagbhatananda and others in northern parts got developed into movements against superstition and bad customs. These evoked a big stirring among the people. An attitude against untouchability and casteism and interest in acquiring modern education were evident among all sections. Pressures for the same started developing in the society. Extension of English education initiated by Christian Missionaries in 1906 and later carried forward by government, rebellion for wearing a cloth to cover upper parts of body, installing an idol at Aruvippuram in 1888, Malayali Memorial in 1891, establishment of SNDP Yogam in 1903, activities, struggles etc. all these became factors helpful to accelerate changes in Kerala society during a short span of time. Movements for liberation from the colonial rule of British imperialism and struggles launched by these movements grew along with them.
It was during this period when social renaissance movements and independence movement were growing that ideas about socialism and Soviet Revolution reached Kerala. Such ideas got propagated in Kerala through the works of Swadeshabhimani Ramakrishna Pillai, Sahodaran Ayyappan, P. Kesavadev and others.
Two: Changing Horizon
During this period against the background of sufferings inflicted by landlordism and imperialism struggles and organizations of peasants and workers against them started emerging slowly. The practice of collective bargaining by working people also started. The peasant rebellion known as Malabar Rebellion of 1921 and consequent political changes highly influenced the independence movement of Kerala.
A number of Kerala youth were jailed during this period for participating in ‘violation of law’ movement as part of independence movement. At this time Kiran Chandra Das brother of Jithendra Das, Kamal Nath Thivari, Sen Gupta, T.N. Chandravarthi and Sarath Chandra Acharya were in Kannur jail and Jayadev Kapur in Vellore jail. Malayalee youngsters got an opportunity at that time to get acquainted with them and establish a link with them. Contact and discussions with them and reading books given by them gave these youngsters a new light. That shook their thoughts. They came to know of many new aspects of political work. This gave a new sense of direction to them. E.M.S writes about it in the following manner:
“It will not be a big exaggeration to say that seeds of left, Congress and Congress Socialist movements were sown at Kannur jail and that too by Thivari.’’
Three: Awakening People
It was youth dissatisfied by the Congress policy which was afraid of people’s advance who were attracted to the socialist idea. At that time there was an atmosphere in Kerala which gave strength to such thoughts.
People were suffering a lot due to persecution by landlords. Against this resistance and organizations were cropping up here and there. In 1935 July a meeting of peasants were held in the Bharatheeya building in Naniyoor in Kolachery Amsom of old Chirakkal Taluk. Kolachery Karshaka Sangham was formed with Vishnu Bharatheeyan as President and K.A. Keraleeyan as Secretary. By September 1935, Karivelloor Karshaka Sangham was formed which represented round Karivelloor, Velloor, Peralam and Kotakkad. With the formation of All India Kisan Sabha in 1936 a new front of struggle was opened in agrarian sector. The Hunger March led by AKG in 1936 July raising the demands of peasants imparted a new vigour to this sector. Following this a number of Karshaka Sangham were formed in Malabar. In 1936 November the first Karshaka Conference of Chirakkal Taluk was held at Parassinikkadavu. In 1937 All Malabar conference of Karshaka Sangham was held in Kozhikode. This awakening among peasants prepared the ground for the advent of a new political movement.
During this period trade unions also started to be formed and strengthened. Global economic crisis of 1929 started creating serious consequences in Indian economy as well. First Travancore Labour Association came into being. Such organizations later became militant TUs. Strikes were organized in Kozhikkode, Kannur, Pappinisseri, Thalassery and other centres which further strengthed TUs. In 1935 May the first Kerala Workers’ conference was held at Kozhikode. This initiative to bring up working class as an independent class force prepared the ground for propagating Communist ideas. During this period coir workers in Travancore got organized and achieved strength. In Kochi organizations like Cochin Sterling Workers’ Union were being formed. Labour brotherhood and TUs of Alagappa Textiles and Sitaram Mills were formed. In 1937 second All Kerala Workers’ Conference was held at Thrissur. This organizational consciousness developed among workers prepared the ground for a new politics.
By the beginning of 1930s some other useful developments were taking place. Important among them was Nivarthana Agitation in Travancore. That was the demand of people suppressed so far as untouchables and weaker sections for participation in government. This brought to the forefront struggles like proportional representation in government and reservation of jobs. This imparted a new enthusiasm among oppressed masses.
- District: Kannur
- Taluk/Tehsil: Kannur
- Block: Kannur
- Assembly Constituency: Kannur
- Parliament Constituency: Kannur
- Police Station: Kannur
- Post Office: 670001
- Telephone Exchange: Kannur 0497
- Nearest Railway Station: Kannur
Kannur has been referred to as a stranglehold of the left parties and has a strong presence of trade unions as well as left leaning organizations. However, various other parties have come into power in the recent elections. Some also associate Kannur with a high incidence of political violence, and untoward political events. In 2013, the Kerala CM, Oomen Chandy, was attacked in Kannur and injured.
Geography and climate
Kannur has an elevation of 1.02 metres (2.98 ft) along the coast of the Laccadive Sea, with a sandy coastal area. The town has an 8 km-long seashore and a 3 km-long beach at Payyambalam. Kannur experiences a rare humid tropical monsoon climate under the Köppen climate classification (Am). In April and May, the average daily maximum temperature is about 35 °C (95 °F). Temperatures are low in December and January: about 20 °C (68 °F). Like other areas on the Malabar Coast, this town receives heavy rainfall during the Southwest Monsoon. The annual average rainfall is 3438 mm, around 68 percent of which is received in July.
|Climate data for Kannur|
|Average high °C (°F)||32.7
|Average low °C (°F)||21.5
|Precipitation mm (inches)||4.8
According to the 2011 census of India, Kannur has a population of 1,642,892. Males constitute 48% of the population and females, 52%. Kannur has an average literacy rate of 96.23%, higher than the national average of 74.04%. Male literacy is 98% and female literacy is 94%. In Kannur, 12% of the population is under six years of age. Malayalam is the most spoken language.
- Caltex is the new central junction of Kannur. This junction is presently the heart of the rapidly developing city of kannur.
- St. Angelo Fort was built in 1505 by the first Portuguese Viceroy of India, Dom Francisco de Almeida. In 1663, the Dutch captured it and then in 1772, they sold the fort to the Arakkal King. In 1790, the British captured it and it was under the British until 1947.
- Payyambalam Beach is a famous Kannur beach with an unbroken coastline of a few kilometres. From the beach, one can see ships in transit along the Malabar Coast, from beyond Kozhikode moving towards Mangalore, Goa and Bombay (Mumbai). It contains a well laid out garden and the massive landscaped sculpture of Mother and Child erected by noted sculptor Kanayi Kunhiraman. But it now lies vandalized by miscreants.
- Arakkal Museum, located in Ayikkara, is a museum dedicated to the Arakkal family, the only Muslim royal family in Kerala, South India. The museum is actually a section of the Arakkalkettu (Arakkal Palace). The Durbar Hall section of the palace has been converted into a museum by the Government of Kerala. It was opened in July 2005 after a massive renovation and is managed by the Arakkal Family Trust.
- Sree Peralassery Temple is located 14 km from Kannur on the way to Koothuparamba.
- MGS Kalari Sangam is a martial arts and massage training academy founded in 1934.
- Cannanore Lighthouse near the Sea View Park is another place of interest. The first lighthouse at Kannur was built in 1843 by the British at St. Angelo Fort. Over the years, the lighthouse was renovated and in 1948, it was moved to its current location. The lighthouse is still in use.
- The Cannanore Cantonment is one of the 62 cantonments in the country and the only one in Kerala. It was established by the British in the 19th century and is still an important location for Indian armed forces.
- Puthiyatheru, which is situated between Kannur-Taliparamba road, is one of the busiest streets in Kannur, which consist of three roads to Kattampalli and Panakavu and Chirakkal.
- The Defence Security Corps (DSC) Centre and DSC Records are located in Kannur town, on the road to Payyambalam Beach. The area is a part of the Cannanore Cantonment and is maintained by the Cantonment Board. The DSC centre at Kannur is the mother depot to all platoons in the country.
- Baby Beach is so called because it is smaller than its larger neighbour, Payyambalam Beach. St. Angelo Fort is adjacent to it. The baby beach is part of the Cannanore Cantonment and access may be restricted at times.
- Meenkunnu Beach is at Azhikode, just a few kilometres from the town.
- Mopla Bay in Ayikkara, near St. Angelo fort, is a major fishing harbor overlooking the Laccadive Sea.
- The Azhikkal Ferry operates near Azhikode, about 10 km from Kannur town, where the Valapattanam river joins the Laccadive Sea. The Azhikkal ferry gives a magnificent view of the sunset. There is a granite pathway here which stretches 2 km into the sea. Frequent passenger boats are available to Mattool, Parassinikkadavu and Valapattanam from here.
- The Fort road is the one of the busiest roads in kannur. There are many malls and shopping streets there. The Kannur City Center is a prominent shopping center on Fort Road.
- Sea View Park, near Payyambalam Beach, is overlooked by the Government Guest House. The park is elevated above the sea level and gives a magnificent view of the sunset.
- Kannur Central Bus Terminal is Kerala's biggest bus terminal. Located at Thavakkara, it is also India's first bus terminal to be developed on a build-operate-transfer (BOT) basis.
- Thottada Beach is a beautiful beach in Kannur district. It is situated just about 2.5 km from the NH 17 connecting Kannur town and Thalassery.
- Muzhappilanghad driving beach is situated in kannur and it is the largest driving beach in Asia.
The Mangrove Trail of Malabar is a day trippers visiting place about 45 km from Kannur. It is a coastal Jungle trail offering hiking, birding & boating. visit www.malabarecotourism.com for more details.
In the 14th and 15th centuries, during the regime of the Kolathiri Rajas, Taliparamba was renowned in Kerala as a seat of learning, enlightenment and culture. In the early days, the Eshuthu pallies under the Ezhuthachan or village school master provided facilities to pupils to acquire elementary education. After undergoing the preliminary course of study in these institutions, the children were sent to the kalaries for acquiring training in gymnastics and in the use of arms and then they were sent to study Sanskrit in Vedic schools. This district had, in the past, its share of such kalaries and Vedic schools. The art of Kalaripayattu is particularly associated with this district.
The beginning of western education in the district may be traced back to the middle of the 16th century. The first English school, known as the Basel German Mission English School, was started on 1 March 1856 at Thalassery. The Brennen School at Thalassery, the nucleus of the present Government Brennen College, was started in 1862 with a generous donation made by Mr. Brennen, Master Attendant at Thalassery. Visit the website - www.brennencollege.org for more details and current activities of Brennen College.
Kannur University was established by Act 22 of 1996 of the Kerala Legislative Assembly. The university by the name “Malabar University” had come into existence even earlier by the promulgation of an ordinance by the Governor of Kerala, on 9 November 1995. The university was inaugurated on 2 March 1996 by the Chief Minister of Kerala. The objective of the Kannur University Act 1996 was to establish in the state of Kerala a teaching, residential and affiliating university so as to provide for the development of higher education in Kasargod and Kannur revenue districts and the Mananthavady Taluk of Wayanad district. Kannur University is a multi-campus university.
Government College of Engineering, Kannur was established in 1986 near Taliparamba as a center for imparting engineering education in northern Kerala. Today the college is among the top ten engineering colleges of the state, providing higher studies in the field of technical education.
Pariyaram Medical College was established in 1999 near Taliparamba. The medical college is at a distance of 10 km from Taliparamba and 32 km north of Kannur. Kannur Medical College was established in 2006 at Anjarakkandy with a 500-bed hospital.
AKG Memorial Co-Operative College of Nursing is located at Poduvachery road Mavilayi, Kannur.
Kannur has the highest passing rate in 2011–12 SSLC.
Kannur is on National Highway 66 or NH 66 (formerly National Highway 17) between Kozhikode and Mangalore. This highway is scheduled to be expanded to four lanes soon. A bypass for Kannur city is also proposed under the NH widening project. Kannur is connected to Kodagu, Mysore and Bangalore in Karnataka through the Thalassery–Coorg–Mysore interstate highway.
Kannur has several private and KSRTC buses plying places inside and outside Kannur district. Kannur is well-connected to its suburbs through several city buses. Kannur city has four bus terminals namely Kannur Central Bus Terminal at Thavakkara which is Kerala's biggest bus terminal, Old Bus Stand near to Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium, City Bus Stand near to the District HQ Hospital and the KSRTC bus stand at Caltex Junction (on NH-66). Being the busiest junctions in Kannur, the authorities have installed 3 traffic signal light systems at Caltex, Thana, Melechovva junctions. But the people face severe road blocks at Melechovva and Puthiyatheru junctions.
Kannur Railway Station is one of the major railway stations of the Southern Railway, under the jurisdiction of the Palakkad Division. All trains including the Trivandrum Rajdhani Express and Kochuveli Garib Rath stop at Kannur. Six daily trains and around 15 weekly or bi-weekly trains connect Kannur to the capital Trivandrum. There are a few express trains starting from Kannur to places like Yeshvantpur, (Bangalore), Alappuzha and Ernakulam. Kannur South, Chirakkal, Valapattanam and Pappinisseri are some minor railway stations near Kannur where only passenger trains stop. A survey for a railway line from Kannur South to Kannur International Airport in Mattannur is announced in the 2011–2012 Union Railway Budget.
Two airports—one at Mangalore, Karnataka, in the north about 173 kilometer away and one at Calicut International Airport in the south—about 125 kilometres away from Kannur town, provide air services to the city.
A new international airport is under construction near Mattanur in Kannur district. Kannur International Airport's foundation stone was laid by V. S. Achuthanandan, Chief Minister of Kerala, on 17 December 2010. The airport is proposed to be completed by 2015.
Kannur is an ancient sea port. The nearest all-weather sea port is Mangalore in Karnataka state. Azhikkal port in Kannur has been included for developing coastal shipping by the Government of India under the National Maritime Development Programme (NMDP). A Detailed Project Report (DPR) has been prepared by ICICI-KINFRA for the development of Azhikkal port.
Malayalam movie actors Sreenivasan, Vineeth Sreenivasan, Dhyan Sreenivasan, Vineeth, Vineeth Kumar, Samvrutha Sunil, TV Chandran, Manju Warrier, Archana Kavi, and Sanusha are from Kannur District, as are music composers Kaithapram Damodaran Namboothiri, K. Raghavan, Kannur Rajan, Ramesh Narayanan, Sathyan Edakkad, dancer Shamna Kasim and singers Ramachandran Cherukunnu Erancholi Moosa, Sayanora.
Many local cable television channels are available in Kannur. The most popular cable channels are City Channel, City Gold, City Juke, Network Channel(s), Zeal Network, Kannur Vision, World Vision, Worldvision Music, Chakkarakkal, and Gramika channel Koothuparamba.
All India Radio is broadcast in Kannur at 101.5 megahertz. Private FM radio stations in Kannur include: Radio Mango 91.9 (Malayala Manorama Co Ltd), Club FM 94.3 (Mathrubhumi Printing And Publishing Co Ltd), Red FM 93.5 (Sun Network), and Best FM 95.0 (Asianet Communications Ltd).
A number of newspapers are published from Kannur, including the Malayala Manorama, Mathrubhumi, Madhyamam, Deshabhimani, Deepika, Chandrika, Kerala Kaumudi, News First, Janmabhumi, Veekshanam, , Thejas, and Siraj.
The place got the name as the Land of Krishna (Kannande uuru) because of the Kadalai Shri Krishnaswami Temple, Shri Rajarajeshwaram, Parassinikadavu Sree Muthappan Temple and Annapurneshwari Temple are the famed temples of the region.
Other temples are
- Kottiyoor Vadakkeshwaram Temple
- Kalarivathukkal Bhagavathy Temple
- Tiruvarkadu Bhagavathy Temple(Aka: Madayi Kavu)
- Payyanur Subrahmanyaswamy Temple
- Kanhirangad Vaidyanatha Temple
- AadiKadalayi Temple
- Peralassery Subrahmanya swamy Temple
- Ramanthali Sankaranarayana Temple
- Thayyil Sree Venkataramana Temple
- Thalap Sundareswara Temple
- Kandamthalli Sreekrishna Temple
- Trichambaram ShriKrishnaswamy Temple
- Suryanarayana Temple
- Sree Vithobha Temple
- Andaloor Sree Ramaswamy Temple
- Kottali kavu
- Thaliparambu Rajarajeswara Temple
- Kadalayi Sreekrishna Temple
- Mattanur Mahadeva Templ
- Thiruvangad Sriramaswamy Temple
- Kannadiparamba Dharmasastha Temple
- Kannadiparamba Siva Temple
- Sree Kappattukkavu Temple
- Meenkulam Sree Krishna Temple
Kottiyoor Vysakha Mahotsavam is a huge religious pilgrimage attracting thousands of pilgrims. It is a festival commemorating the Daksha yaga. The festival is in June–July period of Malayalam calendar for 27 days.
- Cannanore- the old name still used by Indian Railways
- Municipalities in Kerala
- Urban Agglomerations/Cities having population 1 million and above
- Official website of Kannur District
- Arakkal royal family
- Koothuparamba firing
- Climate: Kannur (Cannanore) CalicutNet.com
- "weather and rainfall information of cannanore". Delhitourism.com. Retrieved 2012-07-31.
- "Census of India 2001: Data from the 2001 Census, including cities, villages and towns (Provisional)". Census Commission of India. Archived from the original on 2004-06-16. Retrieved 2008-11-01.
- "Government College of Engineering, Kannur".
- Official website of Kannur International airport
- The Hindu: "Chief minister lays foundation stone for Kannur International Airport"
- "Kannur airport will be dream come true: Achuthanandan" - Newkerala.com
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