I would like to tell something about my hometown

History of Nagercovil
             Nagercovil derived its name from a famous old Jain temple called Naga Raja Temple (temple of the serpent king) which still exists in the central part of the town.
Nagercovil came under the rule of various kingdoms, notably the Chera, Chola and Pandya kingdoms at various points of time; historical records reveal that these kingdoms fought over the control of the fertile area of Nanjilnadu and Kottar (a town mentioned in old Tamil writings and maps of ancient India). Archaeological records also show Jain influences in ancient times.
The modern history of the town is interwoven with the history of Travancore. The modern town of Nagercovil grew around Kottar, now a locality within the municipal limits. The town came into prominence during and after the reign of Maharaja Marthanda Varma, the king of erstwhile Travancore, the capital of which was Padmanabhapuram, about 20 km to the north of Nagercovil. The capital was later shifted to Thiruvananthapuram (Trivandrum), the present capital of Kerala state, about 65 km to the north of Nagercovil. In the Travancore state, from the reign of Marthanda Varma up until India's independence from Britain and Travancore's annexation, Nagercovil was the second most important town in the state, after the capital Trivandrum.
Foreign colonial powers, most notably the Dutch, tried colonizing the areas around Nagercoil and Colachel during the 18th century, but were subdued. The Dutch East India Company(also known as Verenigde Oostindische Compagnie or VOC), with a keen eye on the spices of Travancore, tried to establish a trading post at the then important port town of Colachel, near Nagercoil. In the Battle of Colachel in 1741, a Dutch naval fleet under the command of Captain Eustance De lennoy gained control of the lands from Colachel to Nagercoil, but was subsequently defeated by the Travancore forces under the great king Maharaja Marthanda Varma.
Maharaja Marthanda Varma initiated the process of reforms in various sections of government, especially in the land, revenue, literacy, social and trade departments. His successors continued the reforms on the same stride. Though Travancore was considered by many to be a 'Hindu' administration, the rulers generally had religious tolerance, were not hostile to European educators, missionaries and traders. Though the king of Travancore helped the people of this land they restricted women to wear dress to cover up their chest and there was a revolt against the king and it was called as "Saree Revolt". The king of Travancore tried to subdue the Nadars the dominant caste people in this district, but during earlier times there was a revolt against this, under the leadership of "Muthukutty" who later formed the "Ayya Valli". The district got its freedom from the aggression of the former Travancore after much political fight under the leader of "Marshall Nesamony" in the year 1956 in the free india as the Kanyakumari district has a majority of Tamil speaking population. The district joined with the state of Tamil Nadu.
Until the 19th century, the coffers of Travancore were greatly helped by revenues from the trade of pepper and other spices with the European powers.
Infrastructure like Irrigation systems (an excellent system is still found around Nagercoil), dams, roads, schools etc. developed under the table administration of the Travancore regents and their Dewans. The British in India called Travancore a 'model native state'. At the time, Travancore was the most socially developed and one of the most economically developed states under the British Raj.
During the time of the British Raj in India, Travancore was essentially a vassal to the British, but the British never interfered in the general administration of the Travancore regents.
At the time of India's independence from Britain, the then Dewan of Travancore, Sir C.P. Ramaswamy Aiyer, preferred Travancore to be a sovereign country, but eventually gave up after a tough stand by Sardar Vallabhai Patel, India's federal minister in charge of home affairs. Sir C.P. Ramaswamy Aiyer is still kept in high esteem in Nagercoil, for the many projects and developments that took place during his tenure.
          When the states in India were re-organized in the 1950's, under the States Reorganisation Act, the then Government of Kerala gave Kanyakumari district to Tamilnadu (because majority of the population spoke Tamil in the district) in exchange for Palghat district from Tamilnadu.
           Nagercoil has generally been a communally peaceful place, though there was some tension and violence between the Christian and Hindu communities in the 1980's. Since then, inter-religious meetings organised by various religious faiths and by District Collectors (local administrators) have helped in a good understanding between the various sections of the population.
Culture of Nagercovil
Tamil, Malayalam (due to its proximity to Kerala) and English are widely spoken by the people. These three languages are used as a medium of teaching in all major schools.
            The culture is a mixture of Tamil Nadu and Kerala. Christianity, Hinduism and Islam are
the main religions practiced, with Christians accounting to nearly half of the populace. Some of the communities in the district are Nadars, Nanjil Nadu Vellalars, Paravas, Mukthavas, Vilakki Thalanayar, Kammalar or Asari, Chackarevars, Kerala Mudalis etc.
            Some of the prominent festivals that are celebrated here are Christmas, Onam, Bhagavathy Amman Temple festival, St. Francis Xavier's feast, the Peer Mohammed Durgah at Thuckalay and Ayya Vaikunda Avataram festival at Swamithope among others.

As of 2001 India census, Nagercoil had a population of 208,149. Males constitute 50% of the population and females 50%. Nagercoil has an average literacy rate of 85%, higher than the national average of 59.5%: male literacy is 87%, and female literacy is 83%. In Nagercoil, 9% of the population is under 6 years of age
Some schools and colleges in Nagercoil are more than 150 years old, like Scott Christian College, built by the foreign missionaries. European missionaries, in the 19th century and early 20th century played a major role in imparting education to the people of the town and district.
The Protestant Missionaries were the first to introduce English Education, which was part and parcel of the then Travancore State. The founder of the English School in the erstwhile Travancore State was Rev. William Tobias RingleTaube a native of Prussia and a man of great force and character. He came to the State in 1806 and then onwards, he devoted his whole energy to evangelistic work and wherever he went, he carried with him the mission of English education. He was incessantly preaching and teaching and he established many schools for poor children, Christians as well as non-Christians.
One of the oldest institutions, Sethu Lakshmi Bai (S.L.B) Higher Secondary School is situated in the heart of the town. It has a sprawling campus - one of the biggest in India - with multiple play grounds, huge and airy class rooms etc. It is named after the Travancore queen Rani Sethu Lakshmi Bai.
            Educational institutions include a number of private Engineering colleges, the Government-run Kanyakumari Medical College (at Nagercoil), Polytechnic colleges and Arts and Science Colleges. As in neighbouring Kerala, women's education and career-development are given importance, almost on par with men by all communities, especially among the christians.

     Several Colleges are run by Christian denominations and includes the CSI Institute of Technology, Scott Christian College (Arts and Sciences College, with some specialised departments), Holy Cross College for Women, Women's Christian College, St. Xavier's Catholic College of Engineering, St. Xavier's Catholic College of Nursing (Tamil Nadu's first Catholic diocesan nursing college), etc.                      
The South Travancore Hindu College and Sivanthi Aditanar College in the town are Hindu Arts and Sciences colleges. The Noorul Islam College of Engineering at Kumaracoil, near the town, is a noted institution for its facilities and management education programs.


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Sorry for my bad english. Thank you so much for your good post. Your post helped me in my college assignment, If you can provide me more details please email me.

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