|Posted by Manikandan. M on March 15, 2012 at 5:50 AM|
Gobi or Gobichettipalayam (Tamil: கோபிசெட்டிபாளையம் is a town and municipality in Erode District of Tamil Nadu state, India. Gobichettipalayam is an important city in the northwestern part of the state and is the headquarters of the taluk of the same name. It is situated at 213 metres above sea level and is approximately 35 km from the district headquarters Erode. Gobichettipalayam is also known as 'Chinna Kodambakkam' or 'Mini Kollywood' because of the film shooting that take place here. Many films in Tamil and other languages have been shot here.
A major part of present Gobichettipalayam was previously known as Veerapandi Gramam, and documents and records still use that name.
The city was named after Gobi Chetty Pullan, a scholar of older times. The place was a part of the country ruled by the great king Paari, who is regarded as one of the most generous kings. Pariyur, a place with many temples near Gobichettipalayam was named after him. The land was also ruled by the Cheras and later belonged to Tipu Sultan. After Tipu's defeat, British annexed it to their territory.
Geography and climate
Gobichettipalayam is located in Kongu Nadu, the northwestern part of Tamil Nadu. Its about 35 km from District headquarters Erode, 40 km from Tirupur and 80 km from Coimbatore. Its about 390 km from Chennai and 250 km from Bangalore.
The temperature is moderately warm in Gobichettipalayam, except during the summer months when it is very hot. Rainfall is moderate to high, unpredictable and unevenly distributed. The city is not windy but the abundance of trees and vegetation surrounding the city makes its climate pleasant. The soil mainly consists of black loam, red loam and red sand. In general, the soil in and around the city is fertile and good for agriculture purposes. The surrounding water logged rice fields contribute to the high humidity levels.
Gobichettipalayam municipality has a population of 60,279 according to 2011 census, an increase from 55,150 in 2001. According to the Government of Tamil Nadu, "males constitute 49% of the population and females 51%" and "Gobichettipalayam city has an average literacy rate of 74%, higher than the national average of 59.5%: male literacy is 80%, and female literacy is 68%."
The population is dominated by the Kongu Vellalar community. The taluk also has a number of Uralis. There are a significant numbers of people from other cultures like North Indians, Gurkhas, Malayalis and people from northeastern part of India like Arunachal Pradesh and Sikkim. Because of the cultural and religious importance, many people marry in Gobichettipalayam. People as far as from North India with roots in Tamil Nadu conduct their marriage rituals here.
Official Seal of the Gobichettipalayam Municipality
The Gobichettipalayam Municipal Corporation was constituted on 1 October 1949 as III grade as per G.O. Ms. No. 1948 (Local Administration Department) dated 12 August 1949 with effect from 1 October 1949 and was elevated to Grade II as per G.O. Ms. No. 194 (Local Administration Department) dated 10 February 1970 and to first Grade with effect from 1 October 1977 as per G.O. Ms. No. 1532 (R.D & L.A), 21 September 1977, and to Selection Grade as per G.O. Ms. No. 238 (MA&WS), 2 December 2008.
Main article: Culture of Gobichettipalayam
Kongu Tamil, a dialect of Tamil is the language spoken by majority of the people. English is used as an official language along with Tamil. Other languages spoken include Malayalam, Kannada, Telugu and Hindi.
Gobichettipalayam cuisine is predominantly south Indian with rice as its base. Most locals still retain their rural tradition, with many restaurants still serving food on a banana leaf. North Indian, Chinese and continental cuisines are also available. Mysorepa (a sweet made from lentil flour and Halwa (a sweet made of different ingredients like milk, wheat, rice) are famous. Idly, Dosa, Vada-Sambar and Biryani are popular among the locals. Coffee shops and Chat Centres have been on the increase, and serve as meeting places for young people.
Main article: Economy of Gobichettipalayam
The city is developing quickly and has been described by the government as "Bi-functional", with 31% of the work force engaged in agriculture, 56 % in trading and other activities and 13% in industry. A number of banks have been established in the town in recent years, testimony to the growth of the local economy. ICICI Bank established its third branch in Tamil Nadu here. The economy is predominantly dependent on agriculture.
Gobichettipalayam paddy fields
The economy of Gobichettipalayam centers on agriculture, with paddy, sugarcane, plantain, tobacco and turmeric being the principal crops.. The taluk is noted for its lush green paddy fields which attracts cine industry. There are also growing numbers of spinning mills to support the weaving industry developing in the region. Gobichettipalayam is well known for its plantain cultivation and the production of coconuts and one of the largest producers of silk cocoon in the country. India's first automated silk reeling unit was established in here in 2008. 
Gobichettipalayam has good a communications infrastructure, provided by all major service providers namely Airtel, Vodafone, Tata Docomo, Tata Indicom, Reliance Communications, Aircel, Videocon, Idea, MTS and Uninor apart from BSNL. Services available are DOT landline, CDMA, GSM, 3G Mobile Services and Wimax. Fiber optic cables were laid in 2001, improving Internet access, which had begun with the establishment of a Dial-up and Broadband connection in 1996. A water supply scheme was implemented in 1958, derived from the Bhavani River, with a water pumping station on the river bank at Kodamedu.
The city has numerous hospitals. Apart from the Government hospital, several multi-facility hospitals function in the city. These hospitals attract people from other districts and states contributing to medical tourism. The polio eradication programme is heavily assisted by the Government. Hospitals include, KKS Hospital, Seethalakshmi Hospital, Chakra Hospital, Dakshin Trauma Centre, M.R.S. Hospital, Kumaran Hospital, Gobi Diabetic centre, SP Hospital and a diabetes centre. There are a lot of other small hospitals, clinics and nursing homes apart from medical shops.
Gobichettipalayam was a parliamentary constituency until 2009. It lost its place to the newly formed Tirupur Constituency during delimination by Election Commission. Now Gobichettipalayam assembly constituency is part of Tirupur (Lok Sabha constituency). This Lok Sabha constituency is an agrarian constituency situated in the belt of Keezhbhavani ayacuts. The constituency has many demands of which one of the main is to establish a railway link between Gobichettipalayam and Erode Junction. Plans have been made since the British rule but they still remain only in paper.
See also: List of Educational Institutions in Gobichettipalayam
Gobichettipalayam has a good educational infrastructure. It sends the second highest number of students to medical colleges every year in the state. There are a number of schools offering quality education. Notable of them are Diamond Jubilee Higher Secondary School, established over a 100 years ago and visited by Mahatma Gandhi, and Shree Vidyalaya, which has a full time dyslexic center. The city is also home to Gobi Arts and Science College, one of the oldest arts colleges in the state. The city has few engineering colleges, but the problem is solved bu its proximity to Coimbatore.
Places of Interest
Kodiveri Dam is situated in Gobichettipalayam Taluk, about 15 km. west of Gobichettipalayam in the village of Anaicut. It was constructed by the Maharaja of Mysore in the 17th century. Two channels arise from the dam, One is on the northern side of Bhavani River and the other on the southern side viz “Arakkan Kottai Channel” and “Thadapalli Channel” respectively. Lands north of Gobichettipalayam City are fertile due to the flow of the Thadapalli channel. Cultivation of sugarcane and paddy are predominant in this area.
Bhavani Sagar Dam
Another important dam that has been constructed over the Bhavani River is the Bhavanisagar Dam. It is located about 35 km from the town. The dam was completed in 1953. There is a large park with various attractions. The dam and the park attract huge crowds towards this place.
The Sathyamangalam Wildlife Sanctuary and the reserve forests of Anthiyur areas are about 25 km away from Gobichettipalayam. The T.N.Palayam forest range comes within the Gobichettipalayam Taluk. Abundant flora and fauna thrive in these forests which form a part of the rich biosphere of the Western Ghats. The wildlife includes Indian Elephant, Bengal Tiger, Indian Leopard, Black Buck, Spotted deer, Peacock, Porcupine and Gaur. It is one of the largest elephant habitats in the country with about 2500 or so. It is planned to convert these forests into a tiger reserve.
There are many notable temples in and around Gobichettipalayam. The details of the various temples is given below:
Arulmigu Kondathu Kaliamman Temple, Pariyur
Arulmigu Kondathu Kaliamman Temple
Arulmigu Kondathu Kaliamman
Pariyur Kondathu Kaliamman Temple is situated in Pariyur, about 3 km from Gobichettipalayam city, where a 'Fire Walking Ceremony' (Kundam) is held during January every year. The annual Temple Car festival is celebrated here with grandeur, and the temple attracts a large gathering from the surrounding places all the time. Around 1500 years old, the inner sanctum of the temple is made of black marble. The protector God of this temple is called Sri Maha Muniappan, who blesses couples with children and chases fear away from the minds of the people. There are many shrines dedicated to Lord Ganesha, and shrines of Sri Saptha Kannigai, Sri Ponkaliamman, Lord Brahma and other Gods.
Arulmigu Amarapaneeswarar Temple, Pariyur
Arulmigu Amarapaneeswarar Temple, Pariyur
Apart from the Amman temple, there is a temple dedicated to Shiva in Pariyur. The Shiva temple whose chief deity is Sri Amarapaneeswarar, is built fully of white marble, brought from Rajasthan. There are separate shrines dedicated to Sri Soundaranayaki Amman and the war lord Karthikeya known as Sri Shanmukha Subramaniyar, seen with his wives Deivayanai and Valli. There is a shrine dedicated to Lord Ganesha known as Anukkai Vinayakar at the entrance and Sri Nandhi, the vehicle of Lord Shiva. There are also shrines dedicated to Navagraha, Bhairavar, 63 Nayanmars and other Gods. Maha Shivaratri and Pradhosam is celebrated with much grandeur apart from other festivals of Shiva and
Arulmigu Adinarayana Swamy Temple, Pariyur
The chief deity of Vishnu temple is called Adhi Narayana Perumal. He is seen along with Sri Devi and Bhu Devi. The specialty of the temple is that, there is a separate shrine dedicated to Lord Hanuman, who is considered very powerful and grants the wishes of the people. There are also statues of Sanjeevi Anjaneyar and Veera Anjaneyar. Sri Garuda Alwar is seen in front of the main sanctum. The main Gopuram of the temple depicts the scene of narration of Bhagavad Gita, the holy book of Hindus. Vaikunta Ekadashi and other festivals of Vishnu are celebrated here.
Arulmigu Balamurugan Temple, Pachaimalai
Arulmigu Balamurugan Temple, Pachaimalai
There two old hill temples dedicated to Lord Murugan.  One is located at Pachaimalai (meaning Green hill), about 3 km from the centre of the state. All Saivite, Koumaram and Hindu festivals are celebrated at the temple, especially 'Thai Poosam' in Jan/Feb, 'Panguni Utthiram' in March, and 'Skanda Sashti' in Oct/Nov. The temple has various shrines dedicated to different Gods and Goddesses. There is a huge statue of Lord Murugan, which can been seen miles away from the temple. Apart from his normal peacock vehicle, the temple also has a Golden Chariot for the God.
Arulmigu Muthukumaraswamy Temple, Pavalamalai
It is the second of the hill temples that are dedicated to Lord Murugan. It is located about 2 km from the town on the way towards Pariyur. The chief deity is called Sri Muthukumara Swamy. All festivals of Lord Muruga are celebrated here, which is usually followed by the free distribution of food.
Arulmigu Kumaara Subramaniyar Temple, Kumaran Kundru, Moolavaaikkaal
It is the third of the hill Temples dedicated to Lord Murugan. It is situated on the Gobi - Sathy main road at a distance of about 4nbsp;km from the town. Surrounded by lush green fields, it is presided by the benevolent deity of Lord Muruga. A visit to this Temple is a divine experience in itself.
Arulmigu Mariamman Temple, Bannari
Bannari is located about 35 km northwest of Gobichettipalayam. The temple is dedicated to the powerful Goddess Mariamman. The temple itself is very famous and attracts huge crowds round the year. The temple also has a marriage hall associated with it.
Arulmigu Adinarayana Swamy Temple
The temple is located in the heart of the town. The chief deity of temple is called Sri Devi Bhu Devi Sametha Adhi Narayana Perumal. There are also statues Sri Ganesha(Thumbikai Alwar), Sri Anjaneya and Sri Garuda Alwar. There are also shrines of Navagraha, Vishnu Durga and Sandikeshwarar. Vaikunta Ekadashi and other festivals of Vishnu are celebrated here.
Arulmigu Visweswara Swamy Temple
The temple is located close to Sri Adinarayana Swamy Temple. The chief deity of temple is called Sri Visweswaraswamy (Shiva). There are also shrines dedicated to Lord Ganesha, Sri Vishalakshi Ambal and Lord Murugan. There are also other shrines dedicated to Sri Dakshinamurthy, Navagraha, Sri Bhairava and other Gods. Maha Shivaratri, Thiruvadhirai and other festivals of Shiva are celebrated here.
Arulmigu Saratha Mariamman Temple
The main deity of the temple is Sri Saratha Mariamman. The temple is located in the main bazaar street and attracts huge crowds. The Goddess is very powerful and it is believed that the Goddess Mariamman cures chicken pox and other diseases. A festival is celebrated every year for honoring the Goddess, with much grandeur.
Arulmigu Kamkshi Amman Temple
The main deity of the temple is Sri Kamakshi Amman. The temple is famous among the local people. Many occasions are celebrated in the temple and the Goddess goes on rounds visiting all the households during the New moon day(Amavasya).
Arulmigu Hanumantharaya Swamy Temple
The mail deity is Sri Hanumantharaya Swamy popularly known Anjaneya Swamy. The temple is famous among the locals. The temple is located in the main part of the town nearer to Sri Saratha Mariamman temple. The temple also has statues of Lord Rama with Sita and Lakshmana. The God is believed to give mental strength and courage to fight evil.
Arulmigu Ayyapa Swamy Temple
This temple is specially dedicated to Lord Ayappa. The temple has shrines for many other Gods including Lord Ganesha and Lord Karthikeya. The temple is frequented by devotees who wear Mala and go on a pilgrimage to Sabarimala.
Arulmigu Subramanya Swamy Temple
The temple is also one of the famous temples frequented by locals. The main deity Lord Subramanya(Murugan) is considered very powerful and it is a pleasure to watch Lord Subramanya posing as a king. There are also shrines dedicated to Lord Ganesha and Navagraha.
Arulmigu Suyambu Makaaliamman Temple, Pudukaraipudur
The temple is situated 6 km from Gobichetipalayam in Gobi -Athani main road. The Function was held every year during last week of December ie the second Wednesday of the tamil month Markhazi. The sacred water from this temple is taken to Pariyur Amman temple two weeks before the Kundam Function and used for Poochatu i.e the start of annual function. Another important function of the temple is AdiPooram which is celebrated for 10 days with Daily Yagnams and Poojas during the months of July-August.
Apart from these, there are many other temples which include Sri Astalakshmi Temple, Sri Matheswaran Temple, Sri Sakthi Vinayakar Temple. There is a municipal park with a Temple dedicated to Lord Ganesha inside which is a place frequented by the natives.
Main article: Transport in Gobichettipalayam
The municipality of Gobichettipalayam has 67.604 km of roads, 6.6 km of which are owned by the State Highways Department. Gobichettipalayam city is well connected by major roads passing through the center of the city. The following are the arterial roads that connect the city with other major towns:
State Highway 81 towards Dharapuram/Tirupur/Coimbatore via Kunnathur
State Highway 15 towards Erode and Ooty/Mysore/Bangalore via Sathyamangalam
State Highway 15 A towards Coimbatore via Nambiyur, Avinashi
MDR (Major District Road) towards Anthiyur via Athani (Tamil Nadu)
The Tamil Nadu State Transport Corporation (TNSTC) has a depot apart from a large central bus stand in Gobichettipalayam. Originally called as Jeeva Transport Corporation (JTC), it came into being by bifurcation of the Cheran Transport Corporation (headquartered at Coimbatore). As of 31 March 2005 it was in possession of 1218 buses. Buses ply from the Central Bus Stand to all major towns and cities within Tamil Nadu and other states. A number of Karnataka State Roadways Transport Corporation (KSRTC) buses ply to here due to its proximity to the state of Karnataka.
The nearest railway station is Erode Junction(38 km), which is a major Railway station from where trains ply to all over the country. A railway line has been proposed for Mysore (via Gobichettipalayam, Chamarajnagar). The railway line was proposed during the British rule in 1922; survey was made four times but it failed to materialize.
The Palani-Chamrajnagar railway line scheme was proposed in 1915 and initially it was decided to lay railway line from Palani to Chamrajnagar via Kangeyam, Erode, Gobichettipalayam, Sathyamangalam and Chamrajnagar. The then British Railway conducted surveys in 1922, 1936 and 1942 and survey stones were laid on the proposed railway line. But after Independence the scheme did not take off. But till date, nothing had been done on the Erode-Gobichettipalayam-Sathyamangalam railway line work. For introduction of the scheme it required a minimum Rs. 500 crore and the amount may be sanctioned immediately.
The nearest airport is Coimbatore International Airport (80 km) which has regular flights from/to New Delhi, Kolkata, Mumbai, Ahmedabad, Bangalore, Kozhikode, Chennai, Cochin, Hyderabad, Thiruvananthapuram, Jammu, Pune, New Delhi, Bangkok, Kuala Lumpur, Bahrain, Jeddah, Kuwait, Muscat, Sharjah, Abu Dhabi, Colombo, Dubai, Doha, Singapore, etc.
City Distance (in km)
1 Erode 35
2 Tirupur 39
3 Coimbatore 80
4 Salem 84
5 Udhagamandalam 121
6 Karur 100
7 Trichy 175
8 Mysore 163
9 Madurai 230
10 Bangalore 250
11 Chennai 390
12 Kanyakumari 460
13 Namakkal 88
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