History of district:
Ramanathapuram District is an administrative district of Tamil Nadu state in southern India. The city of Ramanathapuram is the district headquarters. Ramanthapuram District has an area of 4123 Sq.Km. It is bounded on the north by Sivaganga District, on the northeast by Pudukkottai District, on the east by the Palk Strait, on the south by the Gulf of Mannar, on the west by Thoothukudi District, and on the northwest by Virudhunagar District. The district contains the Pamban Bridge, an east-west chain of low islands and shallow reefs that extend between India and the island nation of Sri Lanka, and separate the Palk Strait from the Gulf of Mannar. The Palk Strait is navigable only by shallow-draft vessels. As of 2011, Ramanathapuram district had a population of 1,353,445 with a sex-ratio of 983 females for every 1,000 males.
Main occupation of the district:
PEARL FISHERY: Ramanathapuram coast is well known for pearl fishing. The Pandyan kings who ruled over this District exploited the pearl fisheries of the East Coast. The cholas who succeeded Pandyas not only patronized pearl fishing but also developed it with great care in the Palk and Gulf of Mannar. Marco Polo (1260-1300) who traveled in State India during this period says in his account that the pearl fishing was monopolised by Pandyas. The large quantity of pearls collected from the pearl beds were exported to Mediterranean countries.
The Regional center of the Central Marine Fisheries Research Institute Mandapam which was established in 11947 has developed proven technology for the culture of Pearls, edible oyster calm mussel and seaweed. Commercial Pearl Farming has come up near Kurusadai Island and the Tamil Nadu Fisheries Development Corporation Limited maintains it.
CHANK FISHERY: Ramanathapuram District has distinct chank fishery. Jadhi Chanks are in abundant in the Palk Bay strait and Gulf of Mannar. More than 2000 fishermen are engaged in active chank diving and sacred chank collected by divers are marketed to West Bengal for making ornaments. This contributes significantly to the development of fisheries.
PRAWN FARMING: About 160 Prawn farms are operating in the district which follows intensive type of prawn culture. Prawns harvested from these farms are exported to Japan, USA and European countries, which earns sizable foreign exchange for the country.
FISHERIES INDUSTRIES: In Ramanathapuram district 7 fish processing factories, functioning in Tondi and Mandapam. Prawn, squids, cuttle fish, Crabs and fish are processed by fishing and exported to foreign countries. Many small entrepreneurs are involved in fish drying and dried fish is used in poultry and cattle feed manufacturing.
PADDY: In Ramanathapuram District, paddy is main food crop cultivated in more than 63% of the net area sown. It is cultivated both as irrigated and rainfed. Rainfed sowing generally commences from August and will extend upto October. In early sown area, farmers used to raise medium and long duration varieties of paddy. There is no marked area for late sowing, but when the monsoon rains delayed, the sowing will be also taken up late. In the late sown areas medium and short duration paddy varieties are sown. Farmers are having 10 local paddy varieties in addition to high yielding varieties with the duration ranging from 105-130 days and they will choose varieties according to the need based. Redgram is sown as a mixed crop with rainfed areas and also grown in garden lands to a limited extent. In tankfed ayacut area Irrigated paddy is sown generally in August to November. Sometimes sowing will be further extended upto December according to the filling of rainwater in the tanks and also release of water from Vaigai Dam to the Vaigai fed system tanks.
CHOLAM: Rainfed Cholam sowing is taken up in dry lands between July to September. Beyond September there would not be any sowing of Cholam crop and Cumbu crop will be sown as alternate crop in these areas. Lablab pulses is also sown as mixed crop.
CUMBU: Rainfed Cumbu sowing is generally taken up between September to November. Only in Ramanathapuram Taluk the sowing will be extended upto December. Irrigated Cumbu is taken up from February, March to June, July.
RAGI: Rainfed Ragi sowing is taken up during September and October. Irrigated Ragi is mainly sown in September to October in East Ramanathapuram where the crop is sown in tankfed ayacut.
MINOR MILLETS: Minor millets are generally sown between July to November and the area is spreaded over throughout the district.
COTTON: Rainfed cotton sowing is taken up in September-October. The sowing will be extended sometimes upto December depending upon rainfall. Rice fallow cotton is generally sown in Paramakudi and Kamuthi taluks during January-February months.
PLUSES: Redgram is sown in June to August. Blackgram, Greengram and Cowpea are sown as rainfed crop in September, October months. Redgram is sown as mixed crop with millets and groundnut. Blackgram and Greengram are sown as pure crop as well as mixed crop in cotton and sugarcane. The Cowpea is sown as pure crop and also in some places as mixed crop with millets.
GROUNDNUT AND GINGELY: Groundnut and Gingely are cultivated mostly in Rainfed condition, during the month of December-January and April - May.
CHILLIES: Chillies are cultivated in both rainfed and irrigated condition. Chillies are directly broadcasted in the month of September. The transplanted chillies will be taken in the fortnight of November.
The town is located on south east Tamil Nadu and connected by NH 49 to Madurai from Rameswaram. East Coast Road is the major coastal road in east Tamil Nadu which connects the state capital Chennai and Ramanathapuram; this road also connects Ramanathapuram with Pondicherry, Tuticorin and Kanyakumari. The town is well connected by railroad to major cities in India through Madurai Junction.
- Valinokkam (Imran Umayyatul Badawiyya Shaheed dargah and TN Salt Corporation)
- Sundaramudayan (Seeniappa Shahid Durgah)
- Grave of A.P.J. Abdul Kalam, Peikarumbu near Thangachimadam
- Pamban Bridge (Annai Indira Gandhi Bridge)
- Chitrangudi Bird Sanctuary
- Kundhukal - Vivekananda Memorial
- Ariyaman Beach
- Sea World Aquarium
- Periyapattinam (Syed Ali Waliullah Dargah)
- Nainar Kovil (Naganatha Swamy Temple)
- Panaikulam (Baba-Syed Muhammed Mosque)
- Old Jumma Masjid of Kilakarai. (One of India's oldest 1st Mosque built 628-630 AD and rebuilt in 1036AD, Meenkadai palli)
- Athiyuthu (Pattani Shahib Durgah)
- Uthirakosamangai (3000 yrs Oldest Shiva Temple, priceless Green emerald Stone Nadarajar statue)
- Ramanathapuram Palace (This palace was built during the reign of Kizhavan Sethupathi (1674-1710 CE) the most popular among the Sethupathi Kings.)
- Thiruvettriyur (Paagam Priyal Koil)
- Sikkal ( Sathur vedha mangalam)