History of district:
Dindigul district is an administrative region in the south of Tamil Nadu, India. The district was carved out of Madurai District in 1985. It has an area of 6266.64 km2 and comprises three Revenue Divisions, nine Taluks, and 14 Panchayat Unions. The district is bound by Tirupur, Karur, and Trichy districts in the north, the Sivaganga and Tiruchi districts in the east, the Madurai district in the south, and the Theni and Coimbatore districts and the state of Kerala in the west. As of 2011, the district had a population of 2,159,775 with a sex-ratio of 998 females for every 1,000 males.
Main occupation of the district:
According to Indian Census of 2001, Dindigul town’s urban workforce participation rate is 35.24 percent. Dindigul, being the headquarters of the district, has registered growth in the secondary and tertiary sectors, with a corresponding decrease in the primary Sector. Major employment in the city is provided by industrial estates, hand loom, trading and commerce activities. Approximately 90 percent of the workforce is employed in tertiary sector. The district at large has only two industrial estates, with one of them located in the city. As of 2001, there were approximately 60 tanneries, 165 lock manufacturing units and large number of cotton spinning mills. Locks and steel safes are manufactured in Dindigul and operated as a co-operative sector. Locks manufactured in Dindigul are sold in national and international markets. The Tamil Nadu State Council for Science and Technology, through its research officers wing, has filed geographical indication for Dindigul locks. A decline in lock industry is observed in modern times and other industries like leather, handloom and agro opportunities have gained significance. Silk, muslin and blanket manufacturing is common in Dindigul and after Coimbatore, the city has the second largest textile spindling capacity in the State. Chinnalapatti silk, a brand of silk saree is produced out of Chinnalapatti located 11 km (6.8 mi) from the city. The climate condition of the region is conducive for horticulture and agriculture. The district at large produces non-food crops like, coffee, flowers, tobacco, and eucalyptus. Dindigul is the centre for wholesale trading of fruits like orange, pineapple, sappota and guava, and vegetables like onion. Dindigul was an important centre of trade in tobacco and manufacture of cigars during the British times. A favorite cigar of Winston Churchill called Churut, the 'Light of Asia', was produced in Dindigul. The tobacco industry is one of the main sources of employment for the inhabitants of Dindigul.The central government has a research center for tobacco in Vedasandur. This is one of the two centers in India, the other one is Rajamundri. In modern times, it has the largest trading centre in the state for chewing tobacco and scented betel nuts. Well-known brands of scented chewing tobacco like Angu Vilas, Roja Supari etc. operate out of the city and sent to various places in the state and outside. Dindigul is also one of the leading leather producers and suppliers in the state.
Road: The Dindigul city corporation maintains 131.733 km (81.855 mi) of roads. The town has 21.66 km (13.46 mi) concrete roads, 98.311 km (61.088 mi) bituminous roads, 9.352 km (5.811 mi) earthern roads and 2.41 km (1.50 mi) cut stone pavements. There are three national highways, NH 7 (largest highway in India) connecting Dindigul to Madurai and NH 45A connecting Chennai to Kanyakumari, and NH 209 Dindigul to Bengaluru via Sathyamangalam, Bannari pass via the city. Natham road and Bathalagundu road are the two state highways that pass via the city. Being the district headquarters, lot of district roads also connect Dindigul to other parts of the district. Dindigul is served by town bus service, which provides connectivity within the town and the suburbs. Minibus service operated by private companies cater to the local transport needs. There are 150 town buses operated daily across 128 different routes. The Kamarajar bus stand is an A-grade bus stand covering an area of 5.37 acres (21,700 Sq.m) as of 2007 and is located in the heart of the town. The Tamil Nadu State Transport Corporation operates daily services connecting various cities to Dindigul. The State Express Transport Corporation operates long distance buses like Chennai, Bengaluru and Tirupati. There is significant truck transport with around 400 - 450 trucks entering the town for loading and unloading activities daily. Three wheelers, called autos and Call Taxi are also a common public transport system. Train: Dindigul railway station was established in 1875 when rail line for Trichy to Tuticorin was constructed. Dindigul railway junction is located in the rail head from Chennai to Madurai and Karur to Madurai. It is also connecting Dindigul to Palani. All south bound trains plying south to Madurai from Chennai pass via Dindigul. There are also passenger trains running either side from Madurai to Tiruchirapalli and Palani. The nearest local and international airport is Madurai Airport located 70 kilometres (43 mi) away.
Numerous temples, mosques and churches are found in Dindigul. The Kalahastheeswara-Gnanambika temple was built during the 14th century. The Seenivasaperumal temple built in the bottom of the hill was eroded by time. By the 16th century Pandyan acquired the whole chera kingdom with the support of Vijayanagar king Sachudevarayer. Sachudevarayer, on his visit in 1538 A.D. ordered for the repair works of the temple of Abirami Amman and Padmagirinathar. This is inferred from the script written over stone in the Fort temple. Muthukrisna Nayak became the king of Pandaya kingdom in 1602 A.D. He built the strong hill fort in 1605 to secure Dindigul from invasion. He also built a fort at the bottom of the hill, which was later called Pettaiwall .Thirumalai Nayak redressed the Hill fort and he built the front hall of the Kalahastheeswaraswamy temple. Soundararaja Perumal temple in Thadikombu was erected during his reign. During his Nayak's stay in Dindigul, he fell into sickness and believed to have prayed Rangaperumal to relieve his sickness. Rani Mangammal built the six hundred steps for the hill fort. During the months of January and February, a festival honoring Mariamman is celebrated in this temple. Begumbur Periya Pallivasal, Dindigul, Thowheeth Masjid, Ahle Hadees Pallivasal, Bajar Masjid, Mohammadiyapuram Pallivasal, Mandi Pallivasal, Madinah Pallivasal, Ring Road Pallivasal and Makkah Pallivasal are some of the Islamic institutions in Dindigul. Dindigul Biryani is a common and popular dish, and Dindigul is sometimes called Biryani City.