Kayamkulam Kochunni

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Kochunni was a famed highwayman based in Kayamkulam, active in Central Travancore, India, in early 19th century. He is said to have stolen from the rich and given to the poor (like Robin Hood).[1] He had his intimate friend Ithikkarappakki from Ithikkara village on the shore of Ithikkara River. Kochunni died in jail in 1859.[2]

Kochunni was a devout Muslim going to the local Mosque for salat five times a day.[3] It was because he had experienced abject poverty in his younger days that he developed an aversion to misers, moneylenders and landlords.

By the assistance of an Ezhava leader Arattupuzha Velayudha Panicker, Kochunni was arrested. Kochunni died at Poojapura Central Jail.

Legends on his life are part of the folklore of India. The stories of Kochunni are compiled by Kottarathil Sankunni in his collection of folklores Aithihyamala (Garland of Legends).

A shrine dedicated to Kochunni is attached to Edappara Maladevar Nada Temple near Kozhencherry that dates back more than one-and-a-half centuries.[4] Local people have strong faith in Kochunni Nada at the temple and they offer candles, incense sticks, ganja, country-made liquor, betel leaves, pan, areca nut, tobacco, etc. to propitiate the deity.

There is a small museum at Varanappallil, an ancestral house in Kayamkulam for Kochunni.[5]

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References[edit]

  1. ^ "Wikibooks Malayalam- Aithihyamala- Kayamkulam Kochunni". Wikibooks-Malayalam. 2011-06-07. Retrieved 2011-06-10. 
  2. ^ "Now, a shrine for Kayamkulam Kochunni". The Hindu (Chennai, India). 2007-08-30. 
  3. ^ http://www.chandamama.com/story/stories.php?mId=2&cId=3&sbCId=7&stId=642 chandamama.com, Robin Hood of Kerala
  4. ^ "Now, a shrine for Kayamkulam Kochunni". The Hindu (Chennai, India). 2007-08-30. 
  5. ^ Where a legendary Robin Hood played his tricks, Deccan Herald, July 27, 2008.

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