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Nagercoil_paddy_fieldsEconomic Trend indicates the general movement of economic factors such as demographic features, agriculture, industry, wages, general price level, and employment etc. in an economy over a period of time. It outlines the general tendency towards Government participation in economic affairs. The process of development is essentially a real phenomenon. The increase in real sources and their effective utilisation determines the fate of progress of an economy.

Speaking about the trend of the economy of the Kanniyakumari district, there is a subtle difference when compared to the rest of the districts of Tamil Nadu. The climatic condition, vegetation, cropping pattern and food habits of the people are more akin to the neighbouring Kerala State in spite of the fact that Kanniyakumari district is culturally different from that of Kerala.

Kanniyakumari is a small district having an area of 1684 sq.km. Which represents only 1.29 per cent of the total area of the state? Out of this total area, 1641.3 sq.km. Are rural and 42.7 km. are urban areas.1 About 32.7 per cent of the total area is under forests. Its economy is predominantly agricultural and plantation based.

Agriculture is the mainstay of the people in rural areas. Out of the total area of 144249.98 hectares, the total cultivable area is 60.86 per cent of which 38.98 per cent is irrigated.

Population and Livelihood Pattern: The total population of the district as per 1981 census is 14, 23,399. Out of this, 11, 77,867 people live in rural areas and only 2, 45,532 are urbanites. The percentage of urban population of the district to total population is 17.25 as against 32.95 percent for Tamil Nadu which indicates that more than 82 per cent are in rural ar§as. This shows that Kanniyakumari is a district having typical rural character. Agasthiswaram taluk has three fourth of the. urban population. There is no urban area in Thovalai taluk.

Of the total population of 14, 23,399 persons, 7,16,958 are males and 7,06,441 are females. Thus, the population of male’s works out to 50.37 per cent while that of females, works out to 49.63 per cent. It may thus be seen that the male population outweighs females.

Food habits: 2 Rice is the staple food in the district and tapioca supplements to a larger extent. The poor take gruel, while well-to do are rice eaters. The labour community consumes simple form of food, viz. gruel and tapioca and the dish is mainly fish.

Housing: According to Census operations for the year 1960, there were 2, 11,543 houses in the district, out of which 1.80,046 i.e., 85.11 per cent were in rural and 31.497 were in urban areas. Out of every 1000 census houses in the district. 938 we occupied and 62 vacant. Density of population per occupied house -s 7 17 persons. It is evidenced there from that each house is densely populated. Among the total occupied census houses. 829 were puie or mixed dwellings and the remaining 109 houses were used as shops, factories, hotels, schools, places of entertainment, public health instructions etc. The number of vacant houses was high in Thovalai taluk due to low proportion under pure dwellings and shops. In regard to occupied houses, Agasthiswaram taluk recorded higher proportion of workshops, worksheds and workshop-cum- dwellings. Nagercoil, being the district and taluk headquarters had given a high proportion of workshops.

Mud, burnt bricks and stones are important materials used for the construction of houses both at the State and district levels. A distinct feature in Kanniyakumari district is tnat unburnt bricks palmyrah rafters and bamboos are used, to a very large extent. These are the peculiarities noticed nowhereelse except here. In fact, mud is not so predominant in other parts of the State. Unburnt and burnt bricks alone account for more than 60 per cent of the raw materials used for the construction of walls. Timber is another important wall material in view of its easy accessibility in the forest areas. These facts indicate a better condition of housing in the district.

Grass leaves, thatches etc. are generally used as important roof raw materials in the State Bank, they do not form such high importance in the district now. Tiles constitute an important roof material especially in urban sector. There is also another feature that brick and lime, which constitute the Madras terrace, account for a low proportion in the district. Thus, preference is given generally for thatched roof in rural sector, tiled roof in urban sector and brick walls in both the sectors.

In all the taluks, more than 52 per cent of the houses are constructed with either burnt or unburnt bricks. The residents of Vilavancode has givenmore preference for unburnt bricks. Mud, bamboo palmyrnh rafters and timbers have also been used here to a greater extent, than In othor taluki.

Stone is used to a large extent in Thovalai, which is a hilly tract. Number of mud walls is also comparatively larger in the taluk, Stono and bamboo walls are noticed in Agasthiswaram taluk.

On the whole, Agasthiswaram taluk assumes first place with about 50 per cent of the houses constructed either with stone or a burnt brick as wall material.4 While Vilavancode comes last with only 23 per cent.

Generally in rural and urban areas, one can see independent houses which have mango, guava, jack, banana, coconut, papaya trees etc. within the compound.

Standard of Living: Usually refers to the economic level at which an individual or family lives up. It is determined by the value of goods and services produced or consumed by the individual or family during a given period.

Income is generally a measure of inequality. But direct data regarding income distribution being a scarce factor the standard of living could be set to reflect by the basis of consumption.

There was no special study on calorie consumption in respect of Kanniyakumari district. However, materials pertaining to Tamil Nadu in general have been narrated.

Relevant data for 1961-62 revealed that average calorie intake per capita for India as a whole was 2445, while the inter-state variations ranged from 1620to3037.5With reference to data on per capita food production, in terms of calorie intake, Tamil Nadu was better than Kerala. It was observed that cereals formed main part of foodgrain production. It may thus be seen that there is a close relation between calorie intake and per capita foodgrains production.

The calorie intake for 1961-62 in Tamil Nadu was only 1975 (17th round of the NSS 1961-62) which was below average. Rice along with other cereals contributes 87 per cent of this intake. Protein consumption is less than the National average. Both in rural and urban areas, rice is consumed almost equally. In both the areas, calorie intake is below the recommended level.

According to different studies in NSS, viz., the Food Habits Study and Tamil Nadu Nutrition Study, the availability of calories was 1962 for the year 1961 -6z and 2001 for the year 1970-71. Improvement had been a very little over nearly a decade. Both in rural and urban areas, there was wide inequality in regard to calorie intake among various consumption groups.

As development takes place, bringing in more and more income for the people to consume, the pattern of demand for goods and services undergoes a change from more food and clothing (necessaries) to non-food commodities, and then on to facilities of recreation and comforts (luxuries).

Against this normative position, one can compare the change in the consumption pattern the State had already undergone, referring to the results of the four National Sample surveys (24th, 27th, 32nd and 38th Rounds) conducted in July 1969-June 1970; October 1972- September 1973; July 1977-June 1978 and January 1983-December 1983 respectively.

The trend in consumption expenditure split into food and non-food items separately for rural and urban Tamil Nadu shows that the consumption pattern in both the situation had undergone a change in the right direction away from food items and towards non-food items. The percentage of expenditure on food falling from 74 to 72 and further to 65, the consumption pattern in the rural areas had recorded a slower change than in the urban areas, where the corresponding decline was from 70 to 67 and further to 58 between June 1970 and December 1983. In other words, the process of switchover to non-food items signifying the standard of living catching up was at a faster pace in urban areas. That the rural areas were not lagging much behind the urban areas in this regard, is noteworthy.

Within the food group, the movement away from cereals is faster in rural areas than in urban areas, although the fact remains that in rural food consumption cereals still accounts for a much larger percentage than in the urban situation. A more important observation relates to the expenditure on the other components of the food group. On such important items as pulses, milk and milk products, edible oils, meat, fish, vegetables, etc. the proportion of expenditure had either gone down or stagnated in both the rural and urban situations.

CONSUMER EXPENDITURE FOR RURAL AND URBAN TAMILNADU BY COMMODITY GROUPS

(Per cent)

Rural   Urban

Itemm 24thround

(2)

27thround

(3)

32ndround

(4)

36thround

(5)

24thround

(6)

27thround

(7)

32ndround

(8)

38thround

(9)

1 AH cereals 42.66 41.68 36.03 34.94 27.96 27 57 24.66 23 56
2 Gr»m 0 00 0.00 0.03 0.08 0.00 000 003 007
3 Cereal substitutes 0.25 0.08 0.25 0 09 008 0.04 0.07 0.01
4 Pulses 2.88 3.72 3.49 3.41 407 384 362 3.18
5 Milk and mtlk products 3.20 3.03 3.06 3.32 730 660 5.97 604
6 Edible oils 3.35 3.48 2.91 3.32 4.00 3.68 3.37 344
7 Meat, egg, fish 3.57 3.80 362 3.74 4.05 3.93 3.61 358
8 Vegetables 3.01 3.46 3 90 3.80 4.05 3.60 3.66 3.97
9 Fruits and nuts 1.19 1.38 1.64 1.71 1.86 1.99 1.36 2.09
10 Sugar 1.54 1.78 163 1.59 2.19 2.49 1.87 1.66

Within the non-food group in contrast, there had been a notable increase in the percentage of expenditure on clothing, durable goods and miscellaneous goods and services in both the urban and rural situations. That the urban areas was more or less at a uniform level, accounting for about 7 per cent of the total expenditure, is another noteworthy feature.

Prices:  Price levels in India have been under pressure, sinceNovember 1969. Inadequate supply of essential commodities, a certain excess of money supply and speculative trading in certain cases have been leading to a continuous rise in prices and pushing up the cost of living. Natural calamities like drought, floods etc. contributed a 5.5 per cent rise in the general index of whole sale prices. Both the Central and State Governments take a series of measures to hold the price line. In order to arrest an upward trend in the price of essential commodities, Tamil Nadu is covered by a network of public distribution system. Under this system, essential commodities such as rice, levy wheat, wheat products, levy sugar, kerosene and palmolin are supplied to the cardholders through fail price shops.

During 1985-86, there were 464 fair price shops in the district. Out of this, 87 shops were under the control of the Tamil Nadu Civil Supplies Corporation while the remaining 377 under the Co-operative Societies. Nearly 86 per cent of the shops are in rural areas.

Consumer Price Index Numbers: Pricedifferences across bothtime and space clearly affect the monetary value of needs. Index numbers are widely used to adjust the effects of price differences.

Consumer Price Index is used to measure changes in the prices of goods and services. It is a yardstick for revising wages, salaries and other income payments to keep in touch with rising prices, and it is an indicator of the rate of inflation in the economy.

The Consumer Price Index numbers are compiled at present for Industrial workers for Madras city and six mofussil urban centres. Nagercoil is one among them ar.d the index for the centre is worked out by the State Statistics department with 1960 as base year. This arrangement is in vogue since February 1970.

Retail price data are collected from the centre for various commodities under the five broad groups, viz. food, fuel and lighting, clothing, house rent and miscellaneous and the price relatives are calculated with reference to the corresponding retail prices in the base year. For working out the group index, the weights as ascertained through Family Budget Surveys in the base year are adopted.

The trend in the consumer price index number for Nagercoil centre, during ’1983-84 is reviewed below:-

The Consumer Price Index Number for Nagercoil advanced from 692 in July 1983 to 723 in January 1984 and thereafter it declined and stood at 709 in June 1984. The increase in June 1984 as compared to July 1983 was 2.5 per cent.12

Consumer Price Index Number for selected essential Items In Rural Areas in Tamil Nadu for the year 1983-84 (Base Year 1970-71 100) : Consumer Price Index number for selected essential items in rural areas stood at 320.64 in July 1983. It moved upwards till December 1983 except for a mild fall of 0.88 per cent in October 1983. The index reached the maximum of 332.06 in December 1983. From January 1984 onwards, the index showed a downward trend. During the period from March 1984 to May 1984, the index slightly moved up but again decreased to 320.84 in June 1984.13

The Annual average retail prices of Foodgrains and Salt in the district for the year 1983-84 (July to June)14 ( Prices are in Rs. per quintal)

SI.No. Name of the Centre Commodities
Rice1 sort II sort Cholam Cumbu Ragi
1 Nagercoil 408 403 198 203 206
2 Marthandam _ 418 — _ 233
3 Karungal 425 — — 240
District Average 408 415 198 203 226

 

 

SCHEME FOR PROVIDING SELF EMPLOYMENT TO EDUCATE

UNEMPLOYED YOUTH

A scheme for providing new opportunities for productive gainful self employment to the educated unemployed youth was introduced by the Government of India from 1983 onwards. The objective of the scheme is to encourage the educated unemployed youth to undertake self employment ventures in industry, service and business through the provision of a package of assistance. The scheme covers all areas of the country excepting cities with more than one million populations as per 1981census.

The District Industries Centre at Nagercoil functions as noddle agency. A task force was constituted under the General Manager, DIC comprising representatives of SISI, Officer Lead Bank, District Employment officer and representatives of Commercial banks. The selection of beneficiary is done by the task force. It recommends a composite loan not exceeding Rs.25, 000 and this can be increased up to Rs.35, 000 depending upon the venture. For ventures in business the maximum assistance given is Rs. 15,000; Rs.25, 000 for Service Avocations and Rs.35, 000 for Industries are granted under this Scheme. In Kanniyakumari district, the scheme is implemented with the cooperation of Commerical Banks.

During the year 1983-84, 1245 cases have been recommended by the Task force, involving credit to the tune of Rs.150.36 lakhs. The commercial banks have extended assistance to 877 persons with the financial assistance to the tune of Rs. 103.27 lakhs.1983-84

SI. Sector RECOMMENDED SANCTIONED DISBURSED
No. No. Amount No. Amount No. Amt.
(V (2) (3) (4) (5) (6) (7) (8)
{AMOUNT IN LAKHS )
1 Industries 618 74.41 453 51.50 453 51.50
2 Service 280 41.91 202 28.96 202 28.96
3 Business 347 34.04 222 22.81 222 22.81
Total 1245 150.36 877 103.27 877 103.27
1984-85
1 Industries 293 55.38 197 38.08 144 23.60
2 Service 194 28.89 153 19.95 68 11.32
3 Business
Total 487 84.27 350 58.03 212 34.92
1985-86
1 Industries 427 78.07 247 45.11 207 31.65
2 Service 131 14.19 52 8.20 42 6.46
3 Business 243 24.46 119 11.74 94 8.73
Total 801 116.72 418 65.05 343 46.84
1986-87
1 Industries 349 78.86 205 50.03 168 37.97
2 Service 147 25.62 120 20.20 89 14.95
3 Business 153 17.68 105 13.30 81 9.77
Total 649 122.16 430 83.53 338 62.69
1987-88
1 Industries 260 56.83 139 26.31 124 24.76
2 Service 36 5.62 18 2.28 17 2.21
3 Business 45 5.85 29 3.75 17 3.65
Total 341 68.30 186 34.34 169 30.62

The Industries Commissioner and Director of Industries and Commerce, Madras – Report dated 10 October 1988.

 

 

SELF EMPLOYMENT PROGRAMME FOR URBAN POOR (SEP UP)

The Government of India have formulated a programme for providing self employment to the poorer section of the society living in Metropolitan/Urban and Semi Urban Centres. The objective of the programme is to enable eligible families living below subsistence level in the above areas to undertake self employment with the help of subsidy and bank credit. The Government of India have stipulated that the applicant who comes forward to avail the facilities should be resident of the area and that his monthly income should not exceed Rs.600 per month. If he satisfies this rule, he will be eligible to get a maximum credit assistance of Rs.5000~ depending upon the ventures. The target is fixed according to the population of the area and one for every 300 to be selected and given financial assistance. This includes 30 per cent of Scheduled Caste/Sheduled Tribe beneficiary also. The responsibility for effective implementation of the scheme has been fixed on banks. During 1986-87, four municipal centres viz. Nagercoil, Colachel, Padmanabhapuram, and Kuzhithurai were selected.

The total target for the district for 1986-87 was 771 as per the 1981 population census

SI.No.

W

Name of Municipality(2) No. of Wardsm Target fixed for identify­ing eligible beneficiaries (4) Population as per 1981 Census(5)
1 Nagercoil 36 572 1,71,648
2 Kuzhithurai 19 61 18,427
3 Colachel 20 IT 23,129
4 Padmanabhapuram 20 61 18,240

 

Indian Overseas Bank was the convenor for Nagercoil and Padmanabhapuram centres.44 Similarly State Bank of India and Canara Bank are the Convenors for Colachel and Kuzhithurai centres respectively.

During 1986-87, 790 applications were received as against the target of 771 and sanction was accorded in respect of 670 cases, but amountcould be disbursed by financial institutions only for 664 beneficiaries as particularised below

SI.No.

(V

Centre(2) Target(3) Applhcations

received

(4)

SANCTIONEDf DISB URSED
No.(5) Amount(6) No.(7) Amount(8)
1 Nagercoil 572 576 (Rs. in Lakhs) 494 15.27 492 14.90
2 Colachel 77 77 77 3.66 74 3.51
3 Padmanabhapuram 61 76 55 1.64 54 1.63
4 Kuzhithurai 61 61 44 1.68 44 1.68
771 790 670 22.25 664 21.72

 

Banks: Banks have been extending their credit flow for the benefit of the weaker sections of society bearing in mind the uplift of these sections. Thus the banks have taken efforts in fulfilling the objectives of the Government.

Assistances for the Centrally Sponsored Schemes such as the Massive Programme, IRDP, Self-employment of Educated Unemployed Youth. Sericulture Development and other schemes under the new 20 poinl programme. Bio-gas Development Programme and also House Construction Programme through Tamil Nadu Adi-Dravidar Housing and Development Corporation (THHADCO) are provided for, by the Commercial banks.

Twenty Point Programme :45 In August 1986, the Government of India announced a ‘restructured’ 20 Point Programme, renewing its commitment to the eradication of poverty, raising of productivity, reducing income inequalities, eliminating social and economic disparities and improving the quality of life. The new programme known as Twenty Point Programme 1986’ has been in operation, since April 1,1987.

1 Attack on rural poverty.
2 Strategy for rain-fed agriculture.
3 Better use of irrigation water.
4 Bigger harvests.
5 Enforcement of land reforms.
6 Special programmes for rural labour.
7 Clean drinking water.
8 Health for all.
9 Two child norm.
10 Expansion of education.
11 Justice to Scheduled Castes and Scheduled tribes.
12 Equality for women.
13 New opportunities for youth.
14 Housing for the people.
15 Improvements of slums.
16 New strategy for forestry.
17 Protection of the Environment.
18 Concern for the Consumer.
19 Energy for the villages.
20 A responsive administration.

 

The nationalised banks play vital role towards effective implementatic of ‘New Twenty Point Programme 1986.Achievements under various development schemes during the year 1984-198546

Si Name of Scheme Achievement
No.(1) (2) (3)
(AMOUNT IN RS.)
1 Social Education 15,994
2 Maintenance of grant for maternity centres 5,00,000
3 Maintenance of grants for dispensaries 5,400
4 Additional drugs 1,206
5 Prevention of starvation death 2,200
6 Fisheries Schemes 1,32,340
7 Local Cess Matching Surcharge Grant 45,00,000
8 House tax Matching Grant 4,66,892
9 Maintenance of Hand pumps 50,000
10 Rural Water Supply 6,00,000
11 Special Rural Employment Programme grants 89,90,000
12 U.A.N.R.E.P. grant 94,06,000
13 Local Roads grant 17,62,155
14 Link Roads 5,00,032
15 282 Public Health Drought relief grant 4,000
16 Minor Irrigation 4,50,000
17 A.J.U.D. Land Development 72,000
18 J.B. IRDP 36,00,000

 

There are relatively large differences between rural and urban areas in the income levels of the resident population. The rural part has a disproportionate concentration of the poor, while the people in urban area are relatively well-off. These income differences have been attributed to the underlying socio-economic condition of the population.

Income variations between rural and urban areas are difficult to interpret. In particular, these income differentials reflect real position in levels of well being only to the extent that they are not offset by cost of living differences. As the district is predominantly farm-oriented a major share of its income is received from agricultural operations.The income of the district estimated by industries origin at 1973Whs as followsDistrict Income – Estimates by Industries Origin(at current prices)  Sectors(RUPEES IN LAKHS)

Agriculture and allied activities –

(1) Agriculture 3,170
(2) Animal Husbandry 631
(3) Forestry 34
(4) Fishery 558
Total I 4,393
Mining and Manufacturing -
(5) Mining and quarrying 1
(6) Factory and quarrying 65
(7) Electricity 134
(8) Construction 145
(9) Small enterprises 1,267
Total II 1,612
Commerce, Transport and Communication -
(10) Communication 19
(11) Railways
(12) Organised Banking and Insurance 47
(13) Other Commerce and Transport 1,141
Total III 1,207
Other Services -
(14) Government Administration 381
(15) Profession, Liberal Arts Domestic Services 1,341
(16) House Property 180
Total IV 1,902

 

Small Savings: To accelerate the process of growth in economy, the country should mobilise more financial resources from within to boost the level of investment. The growth process makes it imperative to mobilise savings in a country. The savings, thus mobilise, is utilised to finance various developmental activities.

The details of investment under small savings from 1972-73 to 1986-87 are as followsSmall Savings Collection In Kanniyakumari District From 1972-73 To 1986-87

Year(D Target Fixed (2) Gross(3) Net(9
1972-73 Not furnished (Rupees In Lakhs) 133.44 12.38
1973-74 ii 120.56 19.50
1974-75 II 22.72 13.74
1975-76 II 227.97 15.76
1976-77 ll 200.33 24.95
1977-78 ll 274.78 40.29
1978-79 II 329.99 49.44
1979-80 ll 387.81 63.60
1980-81 75 444.43 74.39
1981-82 75 505.27 87.98
1982-83 75 576.08 121.69
1983-84 100 660.81 123.17
1984-85 155 785.03 213.62
1985-86 300 883.68 265.84
1986-87 436 1,028,23 285.56

 

The gross amount which was only Rs. 133.44 lakhs in 1972-73 has increased to Rs. 1,028.23 lakhs in 1986-87, showing an eightfold increase, within a span of 15 years. The net amount also has increased from Rs.12.38 lakhs during 1972-73 to Rs.285.56 lakhs in 1986-87, an increase by 24 times. This really reflects the sense of thrift developed in the minds of the people of Kanniyakumari district.

Other Economic indicators: 48based on the physiography, the district can be divided into three natural divisions of mountainous terrain, low lands and undulating valley. On the whole, the region has gentle, but definite slope towards west from east. This gentle slope and natural divisions with its vegetation provides an enchanting sight. The paddy fields of the low lands are mixed with large patches of coconut groves and tapioca fields of the valleys. The sands of the sea coast are rich in mineral wealth, while the coast as such provides a natural environment.

Rubber plantation occupies a very important place in the economy of the district. It is carried out in an area of 12,606 hectares in the district, as against 12,716 hectares in the State.

Agriculture is the mainstay of the district. A large section of the workers in the district accounting for 48.44 per cent are cultivators and agricultural labourers. Among rural workers, 56.85 per cent are cultivators and agricultural labourers. Paddy is the most important crop in the district. Tapioca is also cultivated in large areas.

Land Use: Out of the total area of 1, 44,249.98 hectares in the district, the total cultivable area is 60.86 per cent of which 38.9 per cent is irrigated.

Power: It is noteworthy that Kanniyakumari is one of the few districts in the country, where all villages and towns are electrified.

Fisheries: Fishing is an important source of livelihood in the district. The maritime district of Kanniyakumari has a coast line of 68 km. covering west and east coasts. There are about 44 villages along the Kanniyakumari coast, in which fishing is predominant. The total population of the fisherfolk as in 1986 was 1, 14,897. About 510 mechanised and 12,737 non-mechanised fishing crafts are available in the district. This total annual average catch of fish is around 62,400 tonnes which contributes approximately 25 per cent of the total catch of the State, With a view to modernise the fishing and thereby improve socio­economic conditions of the fisher-folk, mechanised fishing boats and nylon twine for fabrication of nets were supplied to them at subsidised cost commencing from the year 1957. From 1 April 1974, the Tamil Nadu Fisheries Development Corporation has taken up the task of supplying.

Financial Institutions: IOB is the lead bank of the district. The Bank prepared credit plans containing bankable schemes for the development of the various sectors of the district’s economy. It aimed to increase the employment opportunities to the weaker sections of the society and to provide better living conditions for the downtrodden, by increasing their income.

The principal financal institutions are commercial banks, the Kanniyakumari District Central Co-operative Bank Limited and the Tamil Nadu Co-operative State Land Development Bank, besides, the State Financial Corporation, like the Tamil Nadu Industrial Investment Corporation, the Tamil Nadu Small Industries Development Corporatkxi, and the State Industries Promotion Corporation of Tamil Nadu Lid, (SIPCOT).

There are 115 branches of Commercial Banks operating in 63 centres. The averages population covered by each branch is 12339.

COMMUNICATIONS: Roads Kanniyakumari district has an excellent network of roads. The trunk road from Madras to Nagercoil and then to Trivandrum enters the district near Aralvoimozhi and passesthrough important places such as Padmanabhapuram, Azagiapandipuram and Kuzhithurai.

Posts and Telecommunications: As regards the Postal Services, Tamil Nadu Postal Circle is one of the major postal circles in India. The district is served with two head post offices and 75 sub-post offices. Besides 30 extra-departmental sub-post offices and 136 extra- departmental branch post offices are also functioning in this district. There are 458 departmental and 525 extra-departmental employees. All the villages in this division are served daily. There are 145 urban and 986 rural letter boxes in the district. Pictorial cancellation of Vivekananda Rock is provided for articles posted in the special letter box at post office, Kanniyakumari. Similary, the district has a good telecommunication system. The capital investment on Telecom assets in the district during 1986 was about Rs. 10.00 crores. About 513 personnel are working in this department.

Broadcast: A Radio Station and TV Relay Centre function here from 30 October 1984 and 8 August 1987 respectively.

Railways: The district is connected by broad gauge railway line from Trivandrum and Tirunelveli (vid) Nagercoil. The Trivandrum- Nagercoil-Kanniyakumari broadgauge section was opened on 16 April 1979 and Nagercoil-Tirunelveli section on 2 April 1981. The longest rail route in India i.e., from Kanniyakumari to Jammu-Tawi originates from Kanniyakumari railway station. The line serves the highlands of the extreme south with tea and rubber estates, the mid lands flooded with agricultural fields of paddy, tapioca and cashewnuts and the coastal strip with its fishing and coir industries. The route has emerged as important broad gauge rail traffic, to places in the north. The route is really a boon to thousands of tourists and pilgrims.

Tourism is a dynamic factor of social progress and a great vehicle of knowledge and ideas; which fosters goodwill among people. It is an important foreign exchange earner. The Government of Tamil Nadu have proudly declared tourism as an industry. Kanniyakumari district has good potential for tourism. As a land of colourful contrasts, it offers the tourists and visitors an opportunity to enjoy art and architecture with modern projects of Science and Technology.

The grandeur of the Western Ghats, the ancient Suchindrum temple, the great historical monuments viz, the Padmanabhapuram palace,memorials of Swami Vivekananda, Mahatma Gandhi, fascinating beach, the varied flora and fauna, plantation, all these make Kanniyakumari a desired destination for domestic and international tourists.

The pleasant climate, the advantageous physiography, combined with fertile soil, fair distribution of monsoons and the coast line adorn the district and add to its beauty and prosperity.

 

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