|Kozhikode / Calicut
|Nickname(s): City of Spices|
|• Mayor||A. K. Premajam|
|• Collector||Smt.C.A Latha|
|• City Police Commissioner||G. Sparjan Kumar IPS|
|• City||128 km2 (49 sq mi)|
|Elevation||1 m (3 ft)|
|• Density||3,400/km2 (8,700/sq mi)|
|• Official||Malayalam, English|
|Time zone||IST (UTC+5:30)|
|Telephone code||91 (0)495|
|Vehicle registration||KL 11|
|Sex ratio||0.915 ♂/♀|
Kozhikode ([koːɻikːoːɖ] ( )), also known as Calicut, is a city in the state of Kerala in southern India on the Malabar Coast. Kozhikode is the third largest city in Kerala and is part of the second largest urban agglomeration in Kerala with a metropolitan population of 2,030,519 as per 2011 census. The city lies about 380 kilometres (236 mi) north of the state capital Thiruvananthapuram.
During classical antiquity and the Middle Ages, Kozhikode was dubbed the "City of Spices" for its role as the major trading point of eastern spices. It was the capital of an independent kingdom ruled by the Samoothiris (Zamorins) in Middle Ages and later of the erstwhile Malabar District under British rule. Arab merchants traded with the region as early as 7th century, and Portuguese explorer Vasco da Gama landed at Calicut on 20 May 1498, thus opening a trade route between Europe and Malabar. A Portuguese factory and fort was intact in Kozhikode for short period (1511–1525, until the Fall of Calicut), the English landed in 1615 (constructed a trading post in 1665), followed by the French (1698) and the Dutch (1752). In 1765, Mysore captured Calicut as part of its occupation of Malabar Coast. Calicut, once a famous cotton-weaving center, gave its name to the Calico cloth.
According to data compiled by economics research firm Indicus Analytics on residences, earnings and investments, Kozhikode ranked as the second best city in India to reside in. It was ranked eleventh among Tier-II Indian cities in job creation by a study conducted by ASSOCHAM in 2007.
- 1 Etymology
- 2 History
- 3 Geography and climate
- 4 Civic administration
- 5 Transport
- 6 Economy
- 7 Demographics
- 8 Places of interest and historical significance
- 9 Culture
- 10 Media
- 11 Telecommunications
- 12 Education
- 13 Renowned personalities
- 14 See also
- 15 References
- 16 External links
The name Kozhikode derives, from koyil (palace) plus kota (fort), meaning "fortified palace." The place was also referred to as Chullikkad, meaning "shrubby jungle," probably referring to the marshy nature of the land. Linguistically, ya and zha are interchangeable in Malayalam, and kode stands for fort (kotta). While the city has been known by different names by people of other lands, Malayalees have called it Kozhikode.
Although the city's official name is Kozhikode, in English it is sometimes known by its anglicised version, Calicut. The word calico, a fine variety of hand-woven cotton cloth that was exported from the port of Kozhikode, is thought to have been derived from Calicut.
Kozhikode is a town with a long recorded history. From time immemorial, the city has attracted travellers with its prosperity. It has traded in spices like black pepper and cardamom with Jews, Arabs, Phoenicians, and Chinese for more than 500 years. As Kozhikode offered full freedom and security, the Arab and the Chinese merchants preferred it to all other ports. The globe-trotter Ibn Batuta (A.D. 1342–47) said:
"We came next to Kalikut, one of the great ports of the district of Malabar, and in which merchants of all parts are found."
Kozhikode was the capital of Malabar during the time of Zamorins (in Malayalam Samoothiri), who ruled the region before the British took over. The city's first recorded contact with Europe was when Vasco da Gama landed at Kappad (18 km north) in May 1498, as the leaders of a trade mission from Portugal. He was received by the Zamorin himself.
Early Kozhikode in foreign accounts
Accounts of the city and the conditions prevailing then can be gleaned from the chronicles of travellers who visited the port city.
Ibn Battuta (1342–1347), who visited six times, gives us the earliest glimpses of life in the city. He describes Kozhikode as "one of the great ports of the district of Malabar" where "merchants of all parts of the world are found". The king of this place, he says "is an infidel who shaves his chin just as the Haidari Fakeers of Rome do...The greater part of the Muhammedan merchants of this place are so wealthy that one of them can purchase the whole freightage of such vessels put here and fit out others like them".
Ma Huan (1403 AD), the Chinese Muslim sailor part of the Imperial Chinese fleet under Cheng Ho (Zheng He) lauds the city as a great emporium of trade frequented by merchants from around the world. He makes note of the 20 or 30 mosques built to cater to the religious needs of the Muslims, the unique system of calculation by the merchants using their fingers and toes (followed to this day) and the matrilineal system of succession.
Abdur Razzak (1442–43) the ambassador of Persian Emperor Sha-Rohk finds the city harbour perfectly secured and notices precious articles from several maritime countries especially from Abyssinia, Zirbad and Zanzibar.
The Italian Niccolò de' Conti (1445), perhaps the first Christian traveller who noticed Kozhikode describes the city as abounding in pepper, lac, ginger, a larger kind of cinnamon, myrobalans and zedary. He calls it a noble emporium for all India, with a circumference of eight miles (13 km).
The Russian traveller Athanasius Nikitn or Afanasy Nikitin(1468–74) calls 'Calecut' a port for the whole Indian sea and describes it as having a "big bazaar."
The Udaiyavar of Ernad, whose headquarters was at Nediyiruppu, wanted an outlet to the sea and after fighting with the Polatthiri king for 48 years conquered the area around Ponniankara and built a fort at a place called Velapuram. Thus the city came into existence sometime in the 13th century AD. The status of Udaiyavar increased and he became known as Swami Nambiyathiri Thirumulpad, and eventually Samuri or Samuthiri. Europeans called him Zamorin.
According to K.V. Krishna Iyer, the rise of Kozhikode is at once a cause and a consequence of Zamorin's ascendancy in Kerala. By the end of the century, Zamorin was at the zenith of his powers with all princes and chieftains of Kerala north of Cochin acknowledging his suzerainty.
Vasco da Gama
Vasco da Gama arrived at Calicut on 20 May 1498 and obtained permission to carry out trade. He landed at a place known as Kappad, near Thiruvangoor. The Arabs sensing the threat posed by Portuguese to their commercial supremacy opposed the Europeans. Bitter fights started between Portuguese and Arabs. The Portuguese went to Cochin for trade and the Raja of Cochin had an alliance with the Portuguese with aim of attaining sovereignty from Zamorin.
The hostilities between the Zamorin and the Portuguese continued for many decades and the role played by the Kunjali Marakkar in these battles can not been forgotten. Kunjali Marakkars were the hereditary admirals of the zamorin and organised a powerful navy to fight the Portuguese.Kunhali II, was one of the greatest of Zamorin's Admirals. Kunjali III built a fort at Kottakkal and enjoyed all the privileges enjoyed by the Nair chiefs. His actions against the Portuguese fleets caused heavy damages to Portuguese shipping and trade from Calicut.
The Portuguese built a fort at Chaliyam at the mouth of the Baypore River in the middle of the Zamorin's territory. Due to the prolonged struggle, Zamorin's military strength deteriorated and he entered into a treaty with them in 1540, which allowed the Portuguese to have monopoly over trade at Calicut port. The peace was temporary and war broke out again resulting in the demolition of Chaliyom Fort in 1571 by the Zamorin forces.
The battles between the Portuguese and the Zamorin continued till 1588 when the Portuguese were allowed to settle down at Calicut. However Kunjali opposed the move. At around this time, Kunjali IV declared himself as the 'King of the Moors' and moved away from the Zamorin. The Zamorins now took the help of the Portuguese to destroy the powerful Kunjalis. In 1600, kunjali surrendered and was executed.
In the meanwhile, the Dutch, English and the French arrived in Kerala. Zamorins allowed the Dutch to trade in Calicut and sought their help to drive out the Portuguese. The position of Portuguese weakened gradually due to international events and their position in Kerala deteriorated. the Dutch captured Cochin and Cannanore and established trade. However, by 1721, the Dutch formally withdrew from all interference in native wars.
Geography and climate
The city of Kozhikode is 410 kilometres (255 mi) north of the state capital Thiruvananthapuram. It is located at approximately . It has an elevation of 1 metre (3 ft) along the coast with the city's eastern edges rising to at least 15 metres, with a sandy coastal belt and a lateritic midland. The city has a 15 km (9.3 mi) long shoreline and small hills dot the terrain in the eastern and central regions. To the city's west is the Laccadive Sea and from approximately 60 kilometres (37 mi) to the east rises the Sahyadri Mountains.
The geographical conditions of city area and suburban areas are similar to the other parts of the district falling in coastal and midland zones. The region comprising Kozhikode Corporation and peri-urban blocks belong to the low- and midlands in the typical classification of land in Kerala as low-, mid- and highlands. Lagoons and backwaters characterise the lowland, which receives runoff from the rivers. The lowland is often subjected to salinity intrusion. The coastal plains exhibit more or less flat, narrow terrain with landforms such as beach ridges, sandbars, and backwater marshes. A few kilometres from the sea to the east, the surface gathers into slopes and clustering hills with numerous valleys in between formed due to floods and sediment transport. The Midlands is represented by hummocky rocky terrain with lateritised denudational hills and intervening valley fills (locally called elas). The 'elas' are fairly wide in the lower reaches of midlands and narrow towards the upper parts of the midlands.
A number of rivers originating from the Sahyadri run along the outer reaches of the city. These include the Chaliyar puzha, Kallayi Puzha, Korapuzha river, Poonoor puzha (river), and Iravanjhi puzha. Of these, Kallai river that runs through the southern part of the city has been the most important culturally and historically for Kozhikode. The Kallai River has its origin in Cherikkulathur village. It is connected with Chaliyar on the south by a man-made canal. The river passes through Cherukulathur, Kovur, Olavanna, Manava and Kallai before finally joining the sea near Kozhikode. The length of the river is 22 kilometres (14 mi).
The Korapuzha river is formed by the confluence of the Agalapuzha with the Punnurpuzha, and it joins the sea at Elathur. The Agalapuzha is more or less a backwater while the Punnurpuzha originates from Arikkankunni. The total length of the river is 40 kilometres (25 mi). Panurpuzha is a tributary of Korapuzha. It passes through the northern boundary of the study area and joins to the sea. The river is perennial.
Canoly Canal was built in 1848 to connect the Korapuzha river in the north to Kallayi river in the south. It functions as a drain to reduce flooding in the city during the rainy season and as a navigation channel.
A system of wetland (mangrove) forests pervade the city from Kallai river to Eranjikkal.
Kozhikode features a tropical monsoon climate (Köppen climate classification Am). The city has a highly humid tropical climate with high temperatures recorded from March to May. A brief spell of pre-monsoon Mango showers hits the city sometime during April. However, the primary source of rain is the South-west monsoon that sets in the first week of June and continues until September. The city receives significant precipitation from the North-East Monsoon that sets in from the second half of October through November.
The average annual rainfall is 3,266 mm. The weather is milder from December/January until March when the skies are clear and the air is crisp. Winters are seldom cold. According to climate charts, 12 locations in India are cooler, 26 are warmer, 37 are dryer and only 1 is wetter than Kozhikode[dubious ] The highest temperature recorded was 39.4 °C in March 1975. The lowest was 14 °C recorded on 26 December 1975.
|Climate data for Kozhikode|
|Record high °C (°F)||35.8
|Average high °C (°F)||28.9
|Daily mean °C (°F)||26.8
|Average low °C (°F)||21.7
|Record low °C (°F)||17.4
|Precipitation mm (inches)||2.7
|Avg. rainy days||0.3||0.3||1.1||4.9||10.8||25.4||25.3||23.3||13.0||11.9||7.7||1.9||125.9|
|Source #1: IMD (average high and low, precipitation)|
|Source #2: NOAA (extremes, mean, humidity, rain days, 1971–1990)|
The city is administered by the Kozhikode Corporation, headed by a mayor. For administrative purposes, the city is divided into 75 wards, from which the members of the corporation council are elected for five years. Recently neighbouring suburbs Beypore, Elathur, Cheruvannur and Nallalam were merged within the municipal corporation.
|Kozhikode Municipal Corporation|
|Mayor||A. K. Premajam|
|Deputy Mayor||P. T. Abdul Latheef|
|Member of Parliament||M.K.Raghvan|
|Police Commissioner||G. Sparjan Kumar|
Law and order
The Kozhikode City Police is headed by a commissioner, an Indian Police Service (IPS) officer. The city is divided into six zones each under a circle officer. Apart from regular law and order, the city police comprises the traffic police, bomb squad, dog squad, fingerprint bureau, women's cell, juvenile wing, narcotics cell, riot force, armed reserve camps, district crime records bureau and a women's station. It operates 16 police stations functioning under the Home Ministry of Government of Kerala.
The city has a reasonably well-developed transport infrastructure. A large number of buses, predominantly run by individual owners, ply on the major routes within the city and to nearby locations. City buses are painted green. Kerala State Road Transport Corporation (KSRTC) runs regular services to many destinations in the state and to the neighbouring states. The city has three bus stands. All private buses to the suburban and nearby towns ply from the Palayam Bus Stand. Private buses to adjoining districts start from the Mofussil Bus Stand (one of the largest bus stand in Kerala) on Indira Gandhi Road (Mavoor Road). Buses operated by the KSRTC drive from the KSRTC bus stand on Indira Gandhi Road. KSRTC Bus Stand Kozhikode is the biggest bus stand in Kerala having a size of 36,036.47 meter square. There are also KSRTC depots in Thamarassery, Thottilpalam, Thiruvambady and Vadakara in the district.
There are two routes available to Bangalore. One is Kozhikode–Gundlupet–Mysore–Bangalore; this road is most preferred one but is very busy. Another route, less used, is Kozhikode–Gundlupet–Chamarajanagar–Kollegal–Bangalore.
A coastal route is available to Kochi via University, Tirur, Chamravattom, Chavakkad and North Paravur. This road is very narrow in some parts but the easiest one.
Private tour operators maintain regular luxury bus services to Mumbai, Bangalore, Coimbatore, Chennai, Ernakulam, Trivandrum, Ooty etc. and mainly operate from the Palayam area. These are usually night services.
National Highway 17 connects Kozhikode to Mumbai via Mangalore, Udupi and Goa to the north and Kochi to the south along the west coast of India. This highway connects the city with the other important towns like, Kasaragod, Kanhangad, Kannur, Thalassery, Mahe, Vadakara, Quilandy, Kottakkal, Kuttipuram, Ponnani, Guruvayur, Chavakkad, Kodungallur, North Paravur and Edapalli.
National Highway 212 connects Kozhikode with Mysore in Karnataka via Nanjangud, Tirumakudal Narsipur, Gundlupet, Sulthan Bathery, Kalpetta and Thamarassery. This highway also connects the city with the suburbs like Malaparambu, Kunnamangalam and premier institutes like IIM-K, NIT-C, IISR and CWRDM.
National Highway 213 connects Kozhikode with Palakkad. It covers a distance of 125 kilometres (78 mi). At Ramanattukara, a suburb of Kozhikode, it joins NH 17. It also passes through towns like Kondotty, Malappuram, Perinthalmanna, and Mannarkkad. This stretch also connects the city and Calicut International Airport.
SH 29 passes through the city. It connects NH 212, Malabar Christian College, civil station, Kunnamangalam and also Padanilam, Thamarassery, Chellot, Chitragiri and Road to Gudallor from Kerala border.
The history of railways in Malabar dates back to 1861 when the first tracks were laid between Tirur and Beypore. Today, Kozhikode is well connected by rail to cities like Thiruvananthapuram, Kochi, Kollam, Palakkad, Coimbatore, Chennai, Bangalore, Kannur, Mangalore, Mumbai and New Delhi. vijayawada, vishakaptnam, Hyderabad
Calicut International Airport is 26 kilometres (16 mi) from the city at Karipur in Malappuram. Regular domestic services are operated to major Indian cities. There are frequent international flights to the Middle eastern air hubs like Dubai, Abu Dhabi, Muscat, Dammam, Riyadh, Jiddah, Sharjah, Bahrain and to Colombo.
The Kozhikode Monorail planned now under implementation stage.The construction will start by the end of 2012. The state government has submitted the proposal for the monorail project to the central government and is awaiting approval. It is an undertaking by DMRC.The routes planned: MedicCalicut Medical College-Meenchanda-Calicut International Airport .The monorail will connect through the railway station. The first phase of the project has an estimated cost of around 20 billion, and is proposed for completion in three phases. It will reach to meenchanda. After completing this project, Kozhikode is the first city have Monorail in south India.The Kozhikode Monorail will be extended to Malapparamba, and plans exist to later extend it to Kunnamangalam.
Kozhikode is one of the main commercial cities of Kerala. The economy is mainly business oriented. The city currently is the major trade hub of North Kerala with good connectivity through road, rail and air. It also has large timber yards along the banks of the Kallayi River. Kozhikode District with 8% of the state population makes 12% contribution to the state's income. Kozhikode has witnessed a building boom in recent years. This is particularly evident in the number of malls and buildings built in recent years. Kozhikode is also going to be the first city in Kerala to have a mono rail transporting system.The KSRTC bus terminal which is under construction is the biggest bus terminal in Kerala.
The District has an intermediate port at Kozhikode (including Beypore) and a minor port at Vadakara. In coast line of the Kozhikode port extends from Elathur cape to the south bank of Kadalundi river and treads roughly in straight line. This port has two Piers, but this cannot be used due to the dilapidate condition. Traffic is mainly dealt at Beypore port. Kozhikode Port has a Light House and a Signal Station. The godown at South Pier is used as transit sheds.
Two IT "cyber parks" are under construction in Kozhikode. One is the UL cyber park (constructed and operated by ULCCSC, a Kozhikode-based company). UL cyber park began operation in 2012 and will complete its first phase in 2013. The other park is run by the government, and will complete its first construction phase in 2014. Cyberpark, is a Government of Kerala organisation planned to build, operate and manage IT parks for the promotion and development of investment in IT and ITES industries in Malabar region of Kerala and will be the third IT hub in the state of Kerala.The two IT park will create a total 100,000(100000) direct job opportunities. It is in the process of setting up IT parks at Kozhikode, at the SEZs approved at Kannur and Kasargod. Its first project is the development of Cyberpark hub in Kozhikode with its spokes at Kannur and Kazargode IT parks. Other planned projects include the Birla IT park (at Mavoor) and Malaysian satellite city (at Kinaloor) where KINFRA has plans to set up a 400-acre (1.6 km2) industrial park.
The city has a strong mercantile aspect. The main area of business was once 'Valiyangadi' (Big Bazaar) near the railway station. As time progressed, it shifted to other parts of the city. These days, the commercial heart has moved to Mittai Theruvu (Sweet Meat Street), a long street crammed with shops that sell everything from saris to cosmetics. It also houses restaurants and sweetmeat shops. Kozhikode city presently has two shopping malls 1. Focus Mall (Located in Rajaji road) and 2.RP Mall (Located on Mavoor road). Focus mall is one of the oldest mall in the state which has 250,000 sq.ft of shopping area,On the other end RP Mall is around 200,000 sq.ft shopping area which covers mall,multiplex and a 4-star Hotel.Some more Retail Mall projects under construction which includes Lulu Mall, Mall of Joy,Gokulam Galleria (3 multiplex),Hilite Mall (8 multiplex),Confident Mall(multiplex),ACE Mall,Grand Mall,Hillwood Ebonade and Orbit Mall. By 2016 Kozhikode will provide an immense amount of shopping experience through the development of retail secrtor as well as entertainment sector.
The municipality of Kozhikode has an average literacy rate of 96.8% (national average is 74.85%). The male literacy rate is 97.93% and female literacy rate is 95.78%. Malayalam is the most spoken language. English, Tamil and Hindi are widely understood.
The Hindus engage in beliefs spanning all forms of theism as well as atheism. Brahma, Vishnu, Shiva and other Gods and Goddesses of the Hindu pantheon are worshipped. Many places have temples with local deities, more often a Goddess (Devi). Festivities like Theyyam, Thira and art forms like Ottamthullal, Kathakali are performed in stages attested to temple estates. Many temples have associated oracles called Velichappad. Serpent and ancestral worship are also practised.
The Muslims of Kozhikode are known as Mappilas, and according to the official Kozhikode website "the great majority of them are Sunnis following the Shafi school of thought. There are also some smaller communities among the Muslims such as Dawoodi Bohras. Many of the Muslims living in the historic part of the city follow matriliny and are noted for their piety. Though Christianity is believed to have been introduced in Kerala in 52 CE, the size of community in Malabar (northern Kerala) began to rise only after the arrival of the Portuguese towards the close of the 15th century. A few Christians of Travancore and Cochin have lately migrated to the hilly regions of the district and are settled there.
Pre-modern Kozhikode was already teeming with people of several communities and regional groups. Most of these communities continued to follow their traditional occupations and customs till the 20th century. These included Kosavan (potter), Vannan (washerman), Pulayan (agricultural worker), Chaliyan (weaver), Chetti (merchant), Thiyya (physicians, militia and toddy tappers), Ganaka (astrologer), Vettuvan (salt-maker), Paanan (sorcerer), Eravallan (firewood and grass carrier), Kammalas, Parayan etc. A number of Brahmins too lived in the city mostly around the Hindu temples. Regional groups like the Tamil Brahmins, Gujaratis and Marwari Jains became part of the city at various periods and lived around their shrines.
The Nairs formed the rulers, warriors and landed gentry of Kozhikode. The Zamorin had a ten thousand strong Nair bodyguard called the Kozhikkottu pathinaayiram (The 10,000 of Kozhikode) who defended the capital and supported the administration within the city. He had a larger force of 30,000 Nairs in his capacity as the Prince of Eranadu, called the Kozhikkottu Muppatinaayiram (The 30,000 of Kozhikode). The Nairs also formed the members of the suicide squad(chaver). The aristocratic Nairs had their Taravad houses in and around the capital. Several Nairs in the city were traders too. The Nairs could not be imprisoned or fettered except for serious crimes like cow slaughter, criticising the King etc. The Mappila community of Kozhikode acted as an important support base for the city's military, economic and political affairs. They were settled primarily in Kuttichira and Idiyangara. Their aristocratic dwelling houses were similar to the tharavad houses of the Nairs and the Thiyyas. Two Ghazi's were recognised as their spiritual leaders. Travellers like Barbosa were intrigued by the extent to which the Mapillas blended into the local society, who spoke the same language and looked like any other Nair (except for the round caps and long beards).
The Thiyyas formed the vaidyars(Physicians), local militia and traders of Kozhikode. Several aristocratic thiyya families such as 'Kallingal madom' were settled in and around the city.
The Tamil Brahmins are primarily settled around the Tali Siva temple. They arrived in Kozhikode as dependants of chieftains, working as cooks, cloth merchants and moneylenders. They have retained their Tamil language and dialects as well as caste rituals. The Gujarati community is settled mostly around the Jain temple in and around the Valliyangadi. They owned a large number of establishments, especially textile and sweet meat shops. They must have arrived in Kozhikode at least from the beginning of the 14th century. They belong to either the Hindu or the Jain community. A few Marwari families are also found in Kozhikode who were basically moneylenders.
Places of interest and historical significance
Kozhikode is famous for its boat-building yard, timber industry and historic temples and churches. There are a large number of tourist locations in the district while tourists visiting Kozhikode are attracted more towards leisure tourism including beaches and historical monuments. Kozhikode functions mostly as a transit point for domestic and foreign tourists. There are 148 classified hotels in Kerala, as listed by the Tourism Department, 22 hotels such as Malabar Palace, The Gateway, Alakapuri, Hyson Heritage and The Westway are located in Kozhikode city and constitute 15% of the state's total classified hotels. Some of the popular places of interest are Kozhikode Beach, Veliyangadi (big bazaar), Mananchira, S.M. Street, Regional Science Centre and Planetarium, Sarovaram Biopark, Tali Siva Temple, Mishkal Mosque, Panniyankara Bhagavati Temple, Thiruvannur Siva Temple, Kappad Beach, Beypore,Beypore Siva temple,Beypore Beach,Thusharagiri Falls.
The Kozhikode Beach is situated near the town of Kozhikode and is known for its old world charm and natural beauty. The beach has two crumbling piers that stand toward the middle of the sea and each of them is more than a hundred years old. The beach also houses a lighthouse, Marine Water Aquarium and Lions Park. The beach is a perfect setting for tourists wanting to enjoy the sunrise or sunset. The beach witnesses huge number of tourists everyday. A large area of the beach was renovated and various statues made by eminent artists are placed here. The coastal area is about 1.2 m above sea level, whereas the eastern part of the city is at about 15 m above sea level. The city has a long seashore of 15 kilometres (9.3 mi). Small hills dot the city terrain in the eastern and central portions. In the city nearly 5500 Hectares of land is used for cultivation and nearly 321 Hectares are waterlogged area.
In the field of Malayalam language and literature, Kozhikode has made many significant contributions. A 17th century Zamorin king named Manavedan authored the famous 'Krishnattam', a manipravala text describing the childhood of Lord Krishna in eight volumes. The district is famous for folk songs or ballads known as Vadakkan Pattukal. The most popular songs celebrate the exploits of Thacholi Othenan and Unniyarcha. An intellectual debate for Vedic scholars, where winners receive the title of Pattathanam, takes place at Thali temple during the month of Thulam. Kozhikode also has a strong associations with ghazals and football.
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Many prominent writers of Malayalam literature hail from Kozhikode. Among them are S. K. Pottekkatt, Thikkodiyan, U. A. Khader, K. T. Muhammed, Akbar Kakkattil, N. V. Krishna Warrier, N.N. Kakkad, M.P.Veerendra Kumar, P. Valsala and M. T. Vasudevan Nair. Sanjayan a known satirist was also from the city. S. K. Pottekkatt was a famous Malayalam writer, author of nearly sixty books which include ten novels, twenty-four collections of short stories, three anthologies of poems, eighteen travelogues, four plays, a collection of essays and a couple of books based on personal reminiscences. His biographical novel Oru Desattinte Katha won the Kerala Sahithya Academy Award in 1972, the Kendra Sahithya Academy Award in 1977, and the Jnanpith Award in 1980.
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In addition to the Malabar Mahotsavam, every year since 1981 the Tyagaraja Aradhana Trust has been conducting a five-day music festival in honour of Sri Tyagaraja. The festival is complete with the Uncchavritti, rendering of Divyanama kritis, Pancharatna Kritis, concerts by professional artistes and students of music from morning to late in the evening.
Kozhikode has a tradition of Ghazal and Hindustani music appreciation. There are many Malayalam Ghazals. The late film director and play back singer M.S. Baburaj, from Kozhikode was influenced by Ghazal and Hindustani.
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Kozhikode offers a variety of South Indian, North Indian, European, Chinese, Arab, Gujarati and Jain food. It also has a street food culture, though small and confined to the outskirts. The European and Arab trade influences, from the importance of Calicut as a port to east Africa and the Mideast, has influenced the culinary culture of Kozhikode.
'Halwa', a sweet meat so called by British, made out of flour and sugar, is a sought after savory in Kozhikode.
However, a new generation of Calicut people are more inclined towards Chinese and American food culture. Chinese food is the most popular and loved among locals. Vegetarianism is increasing as a new trend.
The film history of Kozhikode dates back to 1950s. Some of the main production companies of Malayalam films like Grihalakshmi productions, Kalpaka, Swargachithra, etc. are Kozhikode based companies. The city was also an important hub of top notch film makers like M. T. Vasudevan Nair, I. V. Sasi and T. Damodaran. Kozhikode produced such notable actors as Ummer, Mammukoya, Balan K. Nair, Santha Devi and Kuthiravattam Pappu. The ever green musician Baburaj, Gireesh Puthenchery, arguably one of the best lyricists[original research?] in the Malayalam film industry, lyricist and music director Kaithapram Damodaran Namboothiri, director, script writer and actor Ranjith, Hariharan, V. M. Vinu, A. Vincent, Shajoon Kariyal, Anjali Menon and cinematographer P. S. Nivas also hail from Kozhikode. Some of the other cine actors like Madhupal, Anoop Menon, Nellikode Bhaskaran and Augustine are from Kozhikode. Famous cine actress from Kozhikode include Swetha Menon, Nithya Menen, Mamta Mohandas, Ann Augustine, Nithya Das, Jomol, Akhila Sasidharan, Parvathi Menon.
Kozhikode, the largest city in the Malabar region, also has a vital role in the entertainment segment. City has more than 10 theatres and 1 Multiplex which encourages the entertainment segment to its top. The first multiplex in Malabar became a reality following the efforts of P.S. Nataraj, managing director, P.V.S. Film City, and M.M. Ramachandran, chairman of Atlas Group of Companies with establishment of PVS Film City. Two of the screens have active 3-D facility, which is said to be the first of its kind in the State.
Kozhikode is known as the second Mecca of football (after Kolkata). The other most popular games in Kozhikode are cricket, football, basketball, badminton and volleyball. The E. M. S Stadium hosted many international football matches of major football teams in the past. The city is home to many international footballers. One of the famous was Olympian Abdurahman who played for the nation in many international games including Melbourne Olympic games. K.P. Sethu Madhavan, Premnath Philip, Sudheer etc. are some international footballers from Kozhikode. The seven-a-side form of football is also very famous in the city. P. T. Usha, is a famous athlete who is regarded as one of the greatest athletes India has ever produced and is often called the "queen of Indian track and field". She is nicknamed Payyoli Express. Currently she runs the Usha School of Athletics at Koyilandy in Kerala. T. Abdul Rahman, popularly known as Olympian Rahman, was an Indian Olympian footballer from Kozhikode. Rahman was a member of the Indian team that reached the semi-final in 1956 Melbourne Olympics. Other sports personalities include Tom Joseph (Indian volleyball player and was captain of Indian volleyball team) and Premnath Philips. Jaseel P. Ismail, V. Diju, and Aparna Balan are three international badminton players from the city. The Sports & Education Promotion Trust (SEPT) was established to promote sports development in India with focus on football. Started in 2004 and based in Kozhikode, the trust has set up 22 centres called "football nurseries" spread across seven districts in Kerala. Since 2010, Calicut Mini Marathon runs have been organised by IIM Kozhikode and witness participation of around 7000 people every year.
Kozhikode occupies a prominent position in the history of Malayalam journalism. The origin of journalism in the district can be traced back to 1880. The Kerala Pathrika is likely the earliest newspaper published from Kozhikode. Keralam, Kerala Sanchari and Bharath Vilasam are among the other newspapers that were published from Kozhikode pre-1893.
Kozhikode is the 'birthplace' of the widely circulated Malayalam dailies Mathrubhumi, Desabhimani and Madhyamam. Chandrika, Thejas, Siraj, Varthamanam and Calicut Times are the another dailies from Kozhikode. Along with those papers, noted dailies like Malayala Manorama, Kerala Kaumudi, Mangalam, Deepika, New Indian Express, The Hindu, Deccan chronicle,Janmabhumi, Veekshanam and evening dailies like Pradeepam, Rashtra deepika, News Kerala and Flash are published from Kozhikode. Nearly all news agencies, other major newspapers published from outside the state are represented in Kozhikode. The Times of India, the largest-circulating English broadsheet newspaper in the world, started circulation in Kozhikode on 1 February 2012. A large number of weeklies, fortnightlies and monthlies are also published there (such as Information Technology Lokam, a computer magazine in Malayalam). Newspapers in other regional languages like English, Hindi, Kannada, Tamil and Telugu are available.
The Kozhikode radio station of All India Radio was commissioned on 14 May 1950. It presently has two transmitters: Kozhikode AM (100 kilowatt) and Kozhikode FM [Vividh Bharathi] (10 kilowatt). Private FM radio stations: Radio Mango 91.9 operated by Malayala Manorama Co. Ltd. and Red FM 93.5 of the SUN Network. AIR FM radio station: Kozhikode – 103.6 MHz; AIR MW radio station: Kozhikode – 684 kHz.
A television transmitter has been functioning in Kozhikode since 3 July 1984, relaying programmes from Delhi and Thiruvananthapuram Doordarshan. Doordarshan has its broadcasting centre in Kozhikode located at Medical College. The Malayalam channels based on Kozhikode are the Darsana TV and Media One TV. All major channels in Malayalam viz. Manorama News, Asianet, Surya TV, Kairali TV, Amrita TV, Jeevan TV, Indiavision and Jaihind have their studios and news bureaus in the city. Satellite television services are available through DD Direct+, Dish TV, Sun Direct DTH and Tata Sky. Asianet Cable Vision popularly known as ACV telecasts daily city news. Spidernet is another local channel. Other local operators include KCL and Citinet.
The Calicut Press Club came into existence in 1970. It is the nerve centre of all media activities, both print and electronic. Began with around 70 members in the roll, this Press Club, over the years, became a prestigious and alert media center in the state with a present membership of over 280.
Telephone services are provided by various players like Airtel, Idea cellular, Vodafone, Reliance Infocomm, Tata Docomo, MTS, Uninor, Tata Indicom and the state owned BSNL and most of them provide 3G services also. The city also has broadband wireless services on WiMAX platform.
There were reputed centres of learning and culture in Kozhikode even in the early and medieval periods. Under the rule of the enlightened Zamorins, it became famous all over South India as a rendezvous of scholars and men of learning.
The beginning of western education may be traced back to the first half of the 19th century, when in 1848 the basal Evangelical Mission started a primary school at Kallai. In 1877, a school for the young Rajas was started in Kozhikode. This was later thrown open to all caste Hindu boys. In 1879, it was affiliated to the University of Madras as a second grade college and with this, collegiate education in the district received a fillip. Secondary education recorded an appreciable progress since 1915. The erstwhile Malabar district, of which the present Kozhikode district formed a part, holds a high rank among the districts of Madras Presidency in secondary education.
Kerala primary education starts with pre-primary institutions just like Anganvadis and play schools where it is the basic stage in schooling. Primary school is further divided lower primary (LP) [classes I–IV] and into upper primary (UP) [classes V–VII]. The pattern of primary education is essentially the same all over the state. Each school is affiliated with either the Indian Certificate of Secondary Education (ICSE), the Central Board for Secondary Education (CBSE), Kerala State Education Board or the National Institute of Open Schooling (NIOS). English is the language of instruction in most private schools, while government run schools offer English or Malayalam as the medium of instruction.The city is widely known through the functioning of educational institutions like St. Josephs Boys High School (established in 1794), Spring Valley School.
Calicut is home to two premier educational institutions of national importance: the Indian Institute of Management Kozhikode (IIMK), and the National Institute of Technology, Calicut (NITC). The NITC and IIMK are institutions with university status under Union Government
The NITC was formerly known as Calicut Regional Engineering College (CREC). CREC was born in September 1961 as the ninth of its kind and the first one established during the Third Five Year Plan period. It become a Deemed University under the name National Institute of Technology Calicut in June 2002. NITC is located about 22 kilometres northeast of Kozhikode. It started management education also (School of management Studies) in the year 2009.
The University of Calicut the main university named after the city, is in Thenjipalam, about 24 kilometres (15 mi) south of Kozhikode, in the district of Malappuram. This university established in 1968 was the second university set up in Kerala. Most of the colleges offering tertiary education are affiliated with this university.
The Calicut Medical College was established in 1957 as the second medical college in Kerala. Since then, the institution has grown into a premier center of medical education in the state. Presently it is the largest medical institute in the state with a yearly intake of 250 candidates for the undergraduate program.
Some of the other major institutes in Kozhikode are the (CUIET), Government Engineering College (GEC), Malabar Christian College, Zamorin's Guruvayurappan College, St. Joseph's College, Devagiri, Farook College, Government Arts and Science College, Providence Women's College, Government Homeopathic Medical College, Government Law College, Government College of Teacher Education, Kerala School of Mathematics, DOEACC Calicut, formerly known as CEDTI etc.
There are a few research institutes located in or around the city. These include the Indian Institute of Spices Research (IISR), the Centre for Water Resources Development and Management (CWRDM), Western Ghats Field Research Station (Zoological Survey of India) and the Regional Filaria Training and Research Centre, a centre of the National Institute of Communicable Diseases, Centre for Mathematics. DOEAC is the only VLSI (very large scale integration) research institute in the whole of Kerala.
Many famous diplomats and politicians hails from this district. Among them are V.K. Krishna Menon, C. H. Muhammed Koya, K. Kelappan, K.P. Kesava Menon, P.P. Ummer Koya, M. K. Muneer, and K. Muraleedharan.
Dr. Verghese Kurein was the person who played an outstanding role in the development of Amul. He was known as the 'Father of the white revolution' in India. He is also called as the Milkman of India. Dr. Varghese was the architect behind the success for the largest dairy development programme in the world., christened as Operation Flood.
P. T. Usha is one of the greatest athletes India has ever produced. She has won 101 international medals in her sparkling career. During the 1985 Asian Track and Field Meet at Indonesia, Usha also nicknamed as Payyoli Express secured 5 gold medals, in the 100, 200, and 400-metre sprints, 400m hurdles, 4x400m relay and a bronze ine 4x100m relay. This is the current World Record for the most gold medals earned by a female in a single track meet.
- Mananchira Square
- Kozhikode (Lok Sabha constituency)
- Kozhikode Railway Station
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