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Joining hands

Kerala: God's Own Country. Photo: K. K. Mustafah  

On July 1, 1949, Cochin and Travancore merged to form the state of Travancore-Cochin or Thiru-Kochi.

The state we call Kerala today, was once a collection of princely states and British administered provinces. The northern regions were a part of the Madras Presidency, and it included Dakshina Kannada or South Canara and the Malabar district. The southern regions were either a part of the Kingdom of Cochin or the bigger Kingdom of Travancore.

On August 15, 1947, India became independent. Madras Presidency became Madras State and a part of the Indian Union. As a consequence, the Malabar district and South Canara became Indian districts. Sardar Vallabhai Patel, the Iron Man of India began his mission of integrating princely states into the Union.

Cochin was one of the first princely states to agree to join the Union, while Travancore took a little more persuasion. In 1956, as a result of many movements all over the country, the States Reorganisation Act was passed. In Kerala, the movement was called Aikya Kerala Movement. The Act reorganised the states on linguistic lines. So, Kerala was created by merging Thiru Kochi with the Malabar district of Madras State and Kasaragod Taluk of South Canara district. The Act also transferred the southern part of Thiru-Kochi which included Kanyakumari district to Madras state. Madras state would eventually become Tamil Nadu.

Parur T. K. Narayana Pillai has the distinction of being the last Prime Minister of Travancore, and the first Chief Minister of Travancore-Cochin.

The ruler of Travancore was appointed as the governor (known as Raajpramukh) of Travancore-Cochin. The Maharajah of Cochin was offered to be addressed as Uparaja Pramukh, but he did not want any title after handing over the power .

On 1 November 1956, Travancore-Cochin was joined with Malabar District of Madras State to form the new state of Kerala. A governor, appointed by the President of India, became the head of the state instead of Rajapramukh.

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Printable version | Jan 13, 2021 7:40:40 PM |

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