My town Mananthavady

My town Mananthavady

It is always fascinating that to write an essay about your own native village or town. Digging from past and hearing from here and there you can add more details. Mananthavady locals invite you to contribute  to add more details on this essay...

Mananthavady (Manantoddy) is a Municipal town, recently upgraded from grama Panchayath and Situated in Mananthavady Taluk in the Wayanad district of Kerala, India. The town is located on the banks of Mananthavady Puzha, a tributary of the Kabini River. Mananthavady Locals has a rich heritage,and mix of every caste and creed normally seen in south India. Most of the aboriginals still have a large chunk pf population, while settlers from Malabar and Travancore selected this place as their native one later. Merchants, farmers,Goverment and Private sector employees and visitors make the town as a miniature Kerala, While local workforce from north Indian places and tourists added the flavor as a bigger India. 
Mananthavady has been referred to as "Hosenkadi" in a dictum scribbled under a copper artifact found at the Ananthanathaswamy Temple at Varadoor. Presene of Jain Community and Ananthaswamy temple at Pandikkadavu make this nomenclature as a site of Maha Anantha Vadi. But the dominant view on the etymology is that the word is derived from "Mane Eytha Vady (The place where an arrow was shot at the deer)". This view is strengthened by the existence of a place called Ambukuthy, literally the location where the arrow pierced, on the outskirts of the town. This area was once ruled by the Pazhassi dynasty and the tomb of Pazhassi Raja is an important heritage site located in the heart of the town. Manathavady was a major army camp for the British during their campaign against Pazhassi. One can still see the vestiges of the colonial period - canteen, club, barracks, rest house, cemetery - around Mananthavady. The place Thazhe Agadi was the prominent market place and very important commercial port in Kabani River during the British Era and before. The vast open space near to Pandikkadavu Bridge was once served as barracks of native British soldiers. There was evidence of blood shed as a battle between British and Local people, at Thazhe angadi and near to Valliyoorkavu, most of the attacks from water. Mananthavady remained most important town till 1970s and was the capital of Wayanad Taluka.

The District Hospital in Mananthavady is the only major treatment facility for the service of the tribal communities and other less privileged sections of Wayanad. It is the third biggest town in Wayanad District, after Sulthan Bathery and Kalpetta. Mananthavady is located 35 km north-east of the district headquarters Kalpetta, 80 km east of Thalassery and 110 km north-east of Kozhikode.  All roads are well connected with bus routes including low floor AC Volvo Buses. As a main alternate route to Bangalore, Night traffic is prominent here. Even at 2  am a bus to Ooty and Kannur and numerous buses to Mysore and Calicut are available. Mananthavady town is not sleeping and  freshly prepared food is available all the night from local makeshift Thattukada at GandhiPark.

Major Government Offices, Police station, and  Munsif court are located at Mananthavady.

Mainly five Ghat roads are used for reaching Mananthavady from coastal towns and lower hilly towns of Kerala. No rail connections. A small  Airport  is proposed near to Panamaram, which will ease the present  traffic problems to connect other major towns of Kerala and other airports. It will be cheap and time saving and benefits lot of gulf  employees,Nursing,Engineering  and IT  students in other states., Also tourist flow will be 10 fold.

Thalassery-Bavali Road is the major road passing through Mananthavady, which is well connected with both Mysore and Kodagu. Mananthavady is well connected with Mysore(110 km away), via Kartikulam, Bavali and H D Kote, through Nagarhole National Park. This road is very good and properly maintained, green ,have unending scenic bueaty. Every species of Animals including Tiger, leopard, Bison, Elephants can be seen easily on a normal drive On this road at every corner of , deers, wild pigs and Monkeys are abundant which runs a parallel to Kabini River and closed during the night time to protect wild animals. Another road goes to Gonikoppal(60 km away) in Kodagu, via Kartikulam, Tholpetty forest, Kutta and Ponnampet. From KUtta take right turn toward Nagarhole national park and it connects directly to Hunsoor and Mysore. This road also closes at 6 pm. Kalpetta and Sultan bathery also connected by different very good roads. Caliut is connected by NH 212 through a ghat road, know as Thamarasseri churam or Wayanad ghat road. To reach Kuttiady Vadakara in Calicut District, there is another major road and it runs through a very good ghat section .A direct road from Mananthavady to Nedumpoil, to Kannur is unique and less traffic withvery good roads. On the same route, turn to the Kottiyoor Shiva temple, from Boys town,took the fork to Iritty. The road touches sky in its peak and then goes through the Kottiyoor forest reserve. All roads in the ghat sections were good, slightly narrow in places that's all. All of these make Mananthavady has most number of major roads in Wayanad. For visitors all of these road itself is a treat.

New Institutes

 Wayanad has been an educationally backward district of Kerala until recently, especially when it came to higher education. There was a time when the Government High School (now the Government Higher Secondary School) in Mananthavady was the only high school in the Panchayath. FGKM high schoo, KAniyaram , St Patricks School Ondayangadi, Hill Blooms School, Pandikkadavu, and Amrita vidyalayam are  famous.The situation has vastly improved from that time and since the establishment of Kannur University the opportunities for higher education has also improved. Many government, aided and unaided schools exist in Mananthavady. They come under different boards of education such as Kerala State Education Board and Central Board of Secondary Education. Some of the schools which follow the state syllabus are listed below: The Government College, Mananthavady was established in 1981. It was the only centre for higher learning in North Wayanad for a long time. In 1995 Mary Matha Arts & Science College was started in the Government aided sector. Govt. College of Engineering was started in 1999, the first engineering college in Wayanad. In the unaided sector there are two colleges - P.K.K.M. College of Applied Science and W.M.O Imam Gazzali Arts & Science College. All the colleges are affiliated to Kannur University. The university also has a centre in Mananthavady with three departments (Teacher Education, Zoology and Rural & Tribal Sociology).
 Art Gallery: The Kerala Lalithakala Akademi Art Gallery is located on the Mysore Road. The Gallery regularly hosts exhibitions of various Indian artists and organizes cultural events.
 Boys town (15 km north of Mananthavady): Herbal garden, nature care centre, sericulture unit, perma-culture centre etc., established by the Wayanad Social Service Society and Gene Park (the Indo-Danish project for promoting herbal gardening) are situated here Brahmasthana Temple & Mata Amritanandamayi Math (1.5 km from the Town). Chandanathode: The only pine forest in Wayand.
 Kuruvadweep (17 km east of Mananthavady ): 950-acre (3.8 km2) protected river delta system.
 Latin Church : Situated at the heart of the town. It is a reminder of the towns colonial past.There was once situated a fort made by British. A  cemetery  with lot of unknown Europeans present here.
 Mananthavady Park : It is situated on the banks of the Mananthavady puzha, Oppposite to GHS Mananthavady on Calicut road. (1 km from the Panchayath Bus Stand). The park is also known for its bat colony. The attempts by the authorities to get rid of the bats lead to protests by environmental activists.
Paalamandhapam Devi Temple & Malakkari Temple Koolivayal(12 km from Mananthavady, 6 km from Panamaram town).
Pallikkal Juma Masjid (Kalyanathum Pallikkal): One of the oldest mosques in kerala situated in the heart of pallikkal angadi. 
Payingattery Agraharam (payingattery Gramam): One of the oldest agraharams in Wayanad (2 km of mananthavady)
 Pazhassi Kudeeram: Tomb of Pazhassi Raja (who fought the British to his death).
 Periya: A village about 25 km from Mananthavady town on Thalasserry road., near to it Peria peak boast  the only Evergreen forest in Wayanad.. A nauralist German Mr. Grahah Wolf  made Narayana Gurukulam and Botanical Garden  created by himself has a visual and educational  mine for any nature loving person.
Jessy Estate and Makkimala: are know for gold mining in British era. remains of old mine still there. 
Thalapoya: Known for rich and calm tea estates.
Erumatheru;(Buffalo street): British relocated some people from Andra for their need in diary products and given a street for them.Now they dominates the rich class of the society.
Jain Temple; located at Pandikadavu.

Thirunelli Temple:
This is a famous pilgrim center 36 km from Mananthavady. Thirunelli Temple (also Tirunelli) is an ancient temple dedicated to Lord Vishnu on the side of Brahmagiri hill in Kerala. The Temple is located at an altitude of about 900m in north Wayanad in a valley surrounded by mountains and beautiful forests. It is situated 32 km away from Manathavady its nearest town.History

No proper records of the exact dates of establishment of temple exist, though it is beyond dispute that Thirunelli was once an important town and pilgrim center in the middle of inaccessible jungled valley surrounded on four sides by mountains. There also exists documentary proof that Thirunelli at the time of Chola king Bhaskara Ravi Varma I (962–1019 CE) was an important town and pilgrim center in south India. In the dense jungles surrounding temple, the ruins of two ancient villages can be found. Also recent excavations at the time of paving roads have yielded period coins of 9th and 10th century. Noted historian V. R Parameswaran Pillai in his book "Thirunelli Documents" clearly states that this temple was once an integral part of the early history of North Kerala. Temple bells in sync with mountain streams make spiritual music as you meditate on the Thirunelli Temple premises in the midst of Wayanad forests. Devotees believe that holy dips in the Papanasini mountain spring close to Thirunelli Temple washes away your sins. The sanctum Sanctorium is forbidden to Non hindus, but other parts of temple and Papanasini route is is open for all visitors without any religious restrictions. 
KAlindi Rivulet and Thirunelli village: a tourist spot near to Temple.  The culture is connected with Tribal  and settlers issues, unmarried mothers issue and , place of novelist P Valsala, who wrote a story for the Malayalam  movie Nellu  which pictured here.

Thrissilery Siva Temple: One of the famous shrines in Wayanad situated in Thrissilery. There is a Jala Durga temple in the same complex.
Thrissilery Shiva Temple Wayanad is one of the famous shrines in Kerala. This temple is built in an excellent manner and involves fabulous architecture. Lord Shiva is a Hindu deity worshipped very ardently by Indians and Hindus around the world. Thrissilery Shiva Temple is situated at Thrissilery which is place neighboring to Sulthan Bathery. Wayanad Tourists should visit this Shiva temple and enjoy the excellent architecture and serenity of this temple. 

The principal deity of this Temple is Lord Shiva. There is an interesting fact about this Thrissilery Shiva Temple Wayanad. Devotees of this temple sternly believe that paying one’s contributions to Thrissilery Shiva Temple Wayanad is comparable to completing the ancestral rites at the Vishnu Temple in Thirunelli. Nearby this temple is another famous temple called Jala Durga temple installed by the mythological creator of Kerala by name Parashuram. 

The idols and carvings in this temple exhibit exemplary art work. The principal deity Lord Shiva is also very enchanting in his looks. Devotees who visit this temple can offer flowers, Banana, and coconut as offering to Lord Shiva. You can experience serenity and peace once inside this temple. Mananthavady locals like the following costom and its is a real good thing, that This temple is open for all visitors without any religious restrictions. 

Tholpetty Wild Life Sanctuary : It is 24 km on the way to Coorg.
 Valliyoorkkavu (3 km from the town): This Temple is dedicated to Mother Goddess and is worshipped in three principal forms of Vana Durga, Bhadrakali and Jala Durga. It is the most important place of worship for the tribal communities. The annual 15 day festival is in March/April and is the most grand of all festivals in the district. Slave trade used to take place here during the festival. It is still the largest congregation of all tribals of Wayanad.
  Wayanad Wildlife Sanctuary: Established in 1973, the Wayanad Wildlife Sanctuary is contiguous to the protected area network of Nagarhole and Bandipur of Karnataka on the northeast and Mudumalai of Tamil Nadu on the southeast. Rich in bio-diversity, the sanctuary is an integral part of the Nilgiri Biosphere Reserve, which has been established with the specific objective of conserving the biological heritage of the region. The sanctuary is very rich in flora and fauna. 
Muthireri kavu: A temple associated with Kottiyoor Vysakha Mahotsavam . The temple is situated in small village Muthireri,about 8 km distance in Mananthavady
Pazhassi Smaraka Granthalayam,established in (1926), Solidarity Library, Anjukunnu Pothujana Grandhalayam, Tagore Smaraka Grandhalayam Kommayad, Kaniyaram Prabhath Reading room and Library, Ozhakkody National Library  are notable.