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|Time zone||IST (UTC+5:30)|
|Vehicle registration||TN-75, TN-74|
|Lok Sabha constituency||Nagercoil|
|Vidhan Sabha constituency||Padmanabhapuram|
Thuckalay or Thakkalai (Tamil: தக்கலை) is a town in Kanyakumari district of Tamil Nadu, India. Thuckalay comes under the Padmanabhapuram Municipality. Thuckalay is the administrative headquarters of Kalkulam Taluk. The Revenue Divisional Office is located in Mettukadai. Thuckalay is connected by road from both Thiruvananthapuram (51 km) and Nagercoil (17 km). The nearest railway station is located in Eraniel, which is approximately 5 km from Thuckalay. The nearest airport is the Trivandrum International Airport, which is approximately 51 km from Thuckalay.
Thuckalay is a part of Padmanabhapuram, which was once the capital of erstwhile Travancore. Thuckalay also known as south border for Trivancore samsthanam and the name came as in therku yellai of Trivancore called as Thuckalay.
The Thuckalay Government Higher Secondary School is the largest Government Educational institution in the region. There are also age old instititions such as Amala Convent, which is run by a local church and an international school.
Kanyakumari district's headquarters hospital is located near Mettukadai. There are also privately run hospitals and clinics.
The Padmanabhapuram Palace is located 1 km from Thuckalay Town. The palace is built in the Travancore architectural style, containing 17th and 18th century murals, and underground passages.
The Dutch commander Eustachius De Lannoy was buried in a nearby place called Udayagiri Fort. Udayagiri Fort is situated near the Padmanabhapuram palace. It is built of massive granite blocks around an isolated hillock, 260 feet (79 m) high enclosing an area of almost 90 acres (360,000 m2). The fort was said to have been destroyed by Raja Raja Chola. The fort was rebuilt in the reign of Marthanda Varma, the Venad king during 1741-44 under the supervision of De Lannoy, the Belgian General who served as the chief of Travancore Army loyally for 37 years and died on 1 June 1777 at the age of 62.His body was buried within the fort and a tomb in the fort is marked out, by a stone cross planted at the top, with inscription in both Latin and Tamil. The tomb is being visited by tourists within India and abroad in large numbers.
There is a dargha named ‘Peer Mohamed Oliyullah Dargha’ at Thuckalay named after the great philosopher Peer Mohamed Appa, who was born in Tenkasi of Tirunelveli District. After spending sometime in spiritual pursuits in Peermedu of Kerala State he came and stayed at Thuckalay. Being a Tamil poet of great eminence, he wrote many books on philosophy. He had intimate relationship with the Kings of Chera dynasty. It is said that he laid foundation stone for the Padmanabhapuram Granite Fort.
The Anniversary of the great philosopher poet is celebrated every year on a grand scale on the full moon day in the Arabic month of Rajab. Both the people of Kerala and Tamil Nadu attend the celebrations on large numbers irrespective of their caste, creed and religion.The Tamil Nadu government had declared one day local holiday for the function.
KUMARA KOIL (Tamil: குமார கோவில்
Kumara Koil', also called "Kumara Shethram" and "Subramania Sthala" in Malayalam language "Thiruveragam" in ancient Tamil scripts is at the foot hills of the Velimalai Hills also known as "Velvi Malai", the southern end of the western ghats. The ancient script "Chilappathikaram" refers to the place as "Chera Nattu Eragam". Kumarakoil is one of the important and renowned among the Murugan temples in the district of Kanyakumari Tamil Nadu. It is located near Thuckalay, 15 km from Nagercoil. The temple there is dedicated to Lord Muruga also known as Lord Subramania. The temple is considered to be one of the "Padai veedu" (the six places where the Lord showered devine powers) of Lord Muruga. The ancient poetry "Thirumurugattu Padai" written by poet 'Poet Nakkeerar' refers to the place unique in the sense that the devotees there wear only wet clothes only in the lower part of their body and enter the temple with flowers to have a darshan. This unique feature of worship is being followed there at Kumaran Koil till date. The Tamil epic "Silappathykaram" written by Illangovadigal refers four shetras (temples) as Padai veedu of Lord Muruga. They are TheSenthil, Kongu Nattu Shengodu, Chola Nattu Venguntu and Chera Nattu Eragam (Thiru Eragam). The places connected with Valli viz, Valliyoor, the capital from where Nambirajan the step father (valarpu thanthai) ruled over the place, Valli Aaru (river), Valli Kugai (cave) in the hill top. Kilavan Cholai, (connected with the disguised form as an old man enacted by Lord Muruga) Valli Cholai (ravine), Valli Chunai (small water body) the sacred place where Valli is believed to have taken bath, Uravar Padukalam, connected with the war waged by the relatives of Valli against Lord Muruga, the Vengai tree etc., are in and around Veli Malai. Lord Muruga has two consorts, Devanai and Valli. Valli the second consort of the Lord was married at Velimalai or Velvi Malai. This was Love marriage (Kantharva Kalyanam). The Valli marriage function is being re-enacted every year in the Tamil month of Painkuni (March–April). The history of the temple is available in book form. Therefore, Kumaran Koil is a religious important place for the Hindus. The temple is built on the foot hills of Veli Malai where Lord Muruga enactead a drama to win the heart of Valli the daughter of Nambi Arasan, a chieftain ruled over the place.
Legends have it that Lord Muruga is the cosmic son of Lord Shiva, created by Shivas third eye. He was created to destroy three demons (Asuras) who were a source of misery to the Devas (devine people). The annihilation of the demons by Lord Muruga at Thiruchendur is still being enacted every year in almost every temple dedicated to Lord Muruga and the celebration is known as “Soora Samharam”. Ancient scripts such as Thirumurugattupadai written by poet Nakkeerar, Sillapathigaram written by poet Elangovadigal refers to only Padai veedu as Thrucheeralaivai (Thiruchendur), Thiruvavinamkudi (Palani malai), Thruvoragam (Chera Nattu Eragam or Kumara Shetram)and Kuntuthoradal (all mountain temples dedicated to Lord Muruga) According to the Tamil tradition, it is Hindu belief that Lord Muruga is living in all the mountains, and where there is abundant beauty, there lives Lord Muruga. . The temple faces east and can be reached by a flight of thirty eight steps. The statue of Muruga is eight feet eight inches height. Apart from Valli sametha Murugan sannithanam, sannithanams are dedicated to Lord Shiva (Mahadevar). Parvathy (Shivakami Ammai), Kalyana Vinayagar, Shree Dharma Sastha, Ilaya Naynar, Arumuga Nayinar, etc. The unique feature is that there is a Sannithanam dedicated to Dhakshan who was punished by Lord Shiva for his misdeeds. The Theppakulam (sacred lake) where the devotees take bath before darshan of the Lord bears fresh stream water all the time. There are separate enclosures for the sacred cows, bulls, pecock etc., in the temple enclosure. Devotees feed them and also the fish in the theppakulam (sacred tank). Anna Thanam (feeding poor people) is being done on a daily basis. It is believed auspicious to feed the first feed to the children in the precincts of the Lord. Marriages, ear boring ceremonies, head trouncing, etc., are being done there by devotees as offer to the Lord. During Navarathri Pooja, Annai Adi Parasakthi (the divine mother of Lord Muruga) leave Sushintharam temple situate in Nagercoil, and perform a yatra in Pallakku to Trivandrum, the headquarters of the Kerala State, to participate in the Navarathiri Pooja celebrations at the Devi Koil in the vicinity of the Trivandrum Palace. Lord Muruga from Kumarakoil also accompany Annai in a procession, riding a horse. This practice has been in vogue since 1840 when the rulers of the erstwhile Trivancore Samasthanam (province) changed their headquarters from Padmanabhapuram in Thuckalay to Trivandrum. This practice exemplifies the strong connection between the erstwhile Malai Nattu (kerala) rulers and Kumarakoil. Kumara Koil could be reached by road from Nagercoil (15 kilameters) and Thuckalay (3 Kilometers), Trivandrum (about forty five kilometers). Bus facilities are available. The whole place is filled with lush green paddy fields, banana gardens, coconut trees with the mountain in the background, natural beauty, a feast to the eyes. Refer history of the temple (Sthala varalaru)
History of temple 'Velimalai Kumarakoil Thala Varalaru' written by Shri Annalar Adigal.