Aymanam

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Aymanam
അയ്മനം
Ayemenem
Village
Aymanam is located in Kerala
Aymanam
Aymanam
Aymanam is located in India
Aymanam
Aymanam
Location in Kerala, India
Coordinates: 9°37′29″N 76°29′06″E / 9.6246600°N 76.4851070°E / 9.6246600; 76.4851070Coordinates: 9°37′29″N 76°29′06″E / 9.6246600°N 76.4851070°E / 9.6246600; 76.4851070
Country  India
State Kerala
District Kottayam
Area
 • Total 30 km2 (10 sq mi)
Population
 • Total 35,562
 • Density 1,200/km2 (3,100/sq mi)
Languages
 • Official Malayalam, English
Time zone IST (UTC+5:30)
PIN 686015
Vehicle registration KL-05
Kottayam Olassa, Kottayam
Climate tropical (Köppen)

Aymanam is a village in the Kottayam District of Kerala, India It is about 4 km from the railway station in Kottayam along the road to Parippu, and 85 km from the Cochin International Airport. Aymanam is the setting for Arundhati Roy's 1997 novel The God of Small Things.

Demographics[edit]

As of 2001 India census, Aimanam had a population of 34,985 with 17,268 males and 17,717 females.[1]

Etymology[edit]

Ay means "five" in Tamil and Vanam means "forest" in Malayalam and Tamil. Hence, Aymanam means "five forests", which, according to tradition, were Vattakkadu, Thuruthikkadu, Vallyakadu, Moolakkadu and Mekkadu. They survive today only as "snake groves", where fertility idols, in the form of snakes, were worshiped under the trees. Families depute Brahmin once a year for ritualistic offering.

Geography[edit]

Lake Vembanad lies to the west of the village, near Kumarakom, with the River Meenachil providing its water supply, which often floods from June to August due to regular monsoons. Consequently, two-thirds of the village are paddy fields.

The borders of the village are mostly delineated by rivers or canals, and include the villages of Arpookara, Kumara Nallooru, Thiruvarpu and Kumarakom, and the municipality of Kottayam.

Paddy fields[edit]

Two-thirds of Aymanam are paddy fields (i.e. puncha padams), which lie two meters below sea level, with extensive areas extending to Lake Vembanad. The eleven paddy fields are Eraweesvarm, Palliar, Kallumkathra, Puthenkary, Koduvathara, Thollayiram, Ollokkary, Thattarkandam, Menonkary, Pullanapally and Vattakayal.

Traditionally these fields were cropped annually. Following the monsoon in June and July, an outer mud wall was built around each field, and water pumped out in preparation for planting, which took about a month. August–September to January–February was the growing season, after which the crop was harvested. During the dry season in March, April and May, these fields were grazed by cattle and ducks. With the monsoon in June and July, the mud walls were washed away by the flooding rains.

In 1970 the Thollayram paddy field was established with permanent walls, which enabled double cropping and consequent increase in yield. The widespread adoption of this innovation meant that there was nowhere for flood water to escape. Existing small canals could not cope, so the outer walls were washed away by the flooding monsoon rains along with their crops. Many farmers constructed outer walls to face the floods, but only some were effective.

Now almost all fields are protected by permanent outer walls, to the detriment of the local ecology. The Thanneer Mukham wall which forms a salt water barrier across Lake Vembanad, has change its water currents. Now, the mud and waste carried by the rivers into the Lake are not washed out to sea, but settle in the lake, damaging local fish habitats.

Temples and churches[edit]

The Sree Narasimha Swamy Temple is located in the heart of Aymanam, while the Pandavam Sree Darmashasta Temple is famed for its murals and the Parippu Sree Mahadeva Temple honors the Lord Shiva.

Historic churches include the St. George chapel of the Jacobite Syrian Christian Church and St.Mark's chapel of the Church of South India.

Popular culture[edit]

Arundhati Roy's Booker prize-winning novel The God of Small Things was set at Aymanam:

Notable residents[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Census of India : Villages with population 5000 & above". Registrar General & Census Commissioner, India. Archived from the original on 8 December 2008. Retrieved 2008-12-10.