Salem, Tamil Nadu

Summary

Salem (pronunciation ) (Tamil: சேலம்) is a major city in Salem district, located on the banks of Thirumanimutharu river in the Indian state of Tamil Nadu. Salem is the sixth largest urban agglomeration and metropolitan city in the state by population next to Chennai, Coimbatore, Madurai, Tiruchirappalli and Tiruppur and the sixth largest city in Tamil Nadu by area covering 124 km2 (48 sq mi).[5]

Salem
Clockwise from top left: Mookaneri Lake, Modern Theatres, Trumpet Exchange Flyover, Salem Collectorate and Salem Steel Plant
Clockwise from top left: Mookaneri Lake, Modern Theatres, Trumpet Exchange Flyover, Salem Collectorate and Salem Steel Plant
Nickname(s): 
Salem is located in Tamil Nadu
Salem
Salem
Coordinates: 11°39′N 78°10′E / 11.65°N 78.16°E / 11.65; 78.16Coordinates: 11°39′N 78°10′E / 11.65°N 78.16°E / 11.65; 78.16
CountryIndia
StateTamil Nadu
DistrictSalem district
Government
 • TypeMayor–Council
 • BodySalem City Municipal Corporation
 • Mayorvacant
Area
 • Metropolis124 km2 (48 sq mi)
 • Rank5
Elevation
289 m (948 ft)
Population
 (2011)[2]
 • Metropolis829,267
 • Rank59th
 • Metro917,414
 • Metro rank
60th
Demonym(s)Salemians, Salethar
Languages
 • OfficialTamil
 • SpokenTamil
Time zoneUTC+5:30 (IST)
PIN
636xxx
Telephone code+91-427
Vehicle registrationTN-27, TN-30, TN-54, TN-90
Websitewww.salemcorporation.gov.in

HistoryEdit

Early periodEdit

During the 3rd century BCE, there was period of Bogar – a notable Tamil Siddhar and at that time Jainism and Buddhism arrived. Around the beginning of the common era, the existence of a culturally and economically advanced society in Salem two thousand years ago is evident from the discovery of silver coins of the Roman Emperor Tiberices Claudices Nero (37–68 CE) in Koneripatti of Salem in 1987. Later Pandya dynasty started ruling the region around Salem. Later Pallava dynasty rises in Salem. After that Mahendra Varma Pallava came to Salem and Saivite principles rise. After Mahednra Varma Pallava, Narasimha Varma Pallava came. Soon Pandya dynasty came to Salem. The Hoysala rule established in Salem and parts of few Salem remained under Pandya dynasty.

Medieval periodEdit

The city has been a part of Chola Dynasty. A mosque in the city is believed to be built by Tipu Sultan the ruler of Mysore Kingdom in the present day of Karnataka. The town and the surrounding hilly regions were part of the Chola dynasty and was part of the trade route with the Roman empire.[6] It was later governed by Poligars, who built temples and forts in and around the city.[7] It was part of the Vijayanagara empire before being captured by Hyder Ali during the early 18th century, after the Mysore-Madurai war. It was ceded to the British in 1768 and the area became part of the struggle between Kongu Nadu led by Dheeran Chinnamalai and the British.[8]

Modern periodEdit

Salem became part of Salem district since independence in 1947. Salem district was the first district to be formed in India on 4 April 1792 that spread over 7,530 sq km comprising the present-day Namakkal, Dharmapuri, Krishnagiri. Alexander Reed was the collector of the Salem district from 1792 to 1799.[9]

Until 2008, the city was part of the Salem I and Salem II assembly constituencies.[10][11]

Geography and climateEdit

 
Mookaneri Lake in the City

Salem is located at 11°40′N 78°08′E / 11.67°N 78.14°E / 11.67; 78.14,[12] at an average elevation of 278 m (912 ft.). The city is surrounded by hills: Nagaramalai on the north, Jarugumalai on the south, Kanjamalai on the west, Godumalai on the east and the Shevaroy Hills on the northeast. Kariyaperumal Hill is in southwestern Salem.[13] The Thirumanimutharu River flows through the city, dividing it in two.[14] The fort area is the oldest part of Salem.[15]

LocationEdit

 
Salem City, view from Yercaud hills
 
Salem City, view from Oothumalai hills

Salem lies in the foothills of Shevaroy hills which houses the famous hill Station 'Yercaud'. It is located about 140 kilometres (87 mi) northwest of Tiruchirappalli, 170 kilometres (106 mi) northeast of Coimbatore, 206 kilometres (128 mi) southeast of Bangalore and about 340 kilometres (210 mi) southwest of the state capital, Chennai.

Water bodiesEdit

Mettur Dam is the main water resource for Salem District.

ClimateEdit

Salem has a tropical savanna climate (Köppen climate classification Aw). January and February are generally pleasant; the hot summer begins in March, with the year's highest temperatures during April. Pre-monsoon thunderstorms occur during April and May. The Southwest monsoon season lasts from June to September. The northeast monsoon occurs from October to December.[16][17]

Climate data for Salem, Tamil Nadu (1981–2010, extremes 1901–2012)
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Record high °C (°F) 37.2
(99.0)
39.4
(102.9)
41.7
(107.1)
42.8
(109.0)
42.8
(109.0)
42.8
(109.0)
40.6
(105.1)
39.9
(103.8)
38.9
(102.0)
37.9
(100.2)
35.6
(96.1)
35.6
(96.1)
42.8
(109.0)
Average high °C (°F) 32.1
(89.8)
34.7
(94.5)
37.0
(98.6)
37.8
(100.0)
37.2
(99.0)
35.0
(95.0)
34.0
(93.2)
33.4
(92.1)
33.2
(91.8)
32.1
(89.8)
31.0
(87.8)
30.7
(87.3)
34.0
(93.2)
Average low °C (°F) 19.2
(66.6)
20.4
(68.7)
22.5
(72.5)
25.0
(77.0)
25.0
(77.0)
24.1
(75.4)
23.4
(74.1)
23.0
(73.4)
22.8
(73.0)
22.4
(72.3)
21.1
(70.0)
19.6
(67.3)
22.4
(72.3)
Record low °C (°F) 12.8
(55.0)
11.1
(52.0)
14.4
(57.9)
16.5
(61.7)
18.3
(64.9)
19.3
(66.7)
18.9
(66.0)
18.1
(64.6)
18.5
(65.3)
15.5
(59.9)
12.8
(55.0)
12.8
(55.0)
11.1
(52.0)
Average rainfall mm (inches) 4.4
(0.17)
3.4
(0.13)
17.3
(0.68)
55.5
(2.19)
109.7
(4.32)
72.4
(2.85)
108.0
(4.25)
140.6
(5.54)
176.5
(6.95)
185.5
(7.30)
110.2
(4.34)
35.0
(1.38)
1,018.5
(40.10)
Average rainy days 0.3 0.3 0.8 3.2 6.3 4.8 6.3 8.1 8.6 9.9 6.4 2.6 57.6
Average relative humidity (%) (at 17:30 IST) 45 36 33 40 49 55 57 58 61 69 66 56 52
Source: India Meteorological Department[18][19]

Administration and politicsEdit

Municipal corporation officials
Mayor [20]
Commissioner Christuraj[21]
Deputy Mayor vacant[22]
Member of Legislative Assembly
Salem North R. Rajendhran[23]
Salem West Arul Ramadoss[24]
Salem South Balasubramanian[25]
Member of Parliament
Salem (Lok Sabha constituency) S. R. Parthiban[26]

Municipal corporationEdit

 
Salem Collectorate
 
Cannon at Salem Corporation headquarters

Salem is the headquarters of Salem district. The town was constituted as a municipality in 1867, and was upgraded to a special-grade municipality in 1979 and to a municipal corporation on 1 April 1994. The Salem municipal corporation has 72 wards,[27] each with an elected councillor.[28] The functions of the municipal corporation are divided into six departments: general administration and personnel, engineering, revenue, public health, city planning and information technology (IT). All six departments are governed by a municipal commissioner.[29] Legislative power is vested in the 60-member council,[30] headed by an elected chairperson and assisted by a deputy chairperson.[31]

State AssemblyEdit

In 2008, the constituencies of Salem were redrawn as Salem North, Salem South and Salem West.[32] The city elects the three members to the Tamil Nadu Legislative Assembly once every five years.[33] Present MLAs are R. Rajendhran (Salem North) from Desiya Murpokku Dravidar Kazhagam, Arul Ramadoss (Salem West) from Paattali Makkal Katchi and Balasubramanian (Salem South) from All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam.[23][24][25]

ParliamentEdit

The city is part of the Salem Lok Sabha constituency.[34] The current Member of Parliament from the constituency is S. R. Parthiban from the DMK.[26]

Law enforcementEdit

Law and order is maintained by the Salem city subdivision of the Tamil Nadu Police, headed by a Police commissioner. Special units include prohibition enforcement, district crime, social justice and human rights, district crime records and a district-level special branch headed by a superintendent of police.[35]

EconomyEdit

 

Salem is a major textile centre in Tamil Nadu, with more than 125 spinning mills, weaving units and garment units. Until the 1960s, it had fewer spinning mills. Private handloom weaving began to increase in the region after the 1960s and during the 1980s, the textile industry expanded with major spinning mills and dyeing units established supporting the industry.[36]

The area also houses a number of sago factories for the production starch. In Salem district, 34,000 hectares (130 sq mi) of land are devoted to cassava and 650 industrial units are engaged in tapioca processing. In 1981, the Salem Starch and Sago Manufacturers Service Industrial Co-operative Society (SAGOSERVE) was established to promote the sago industry and nearly 80 percent of the national demand for sago and starch is met by SAGOSERVE.[37] In and around Salem cassava yields are 25–30 tons per hectare, one of the highest in the world; the national average is 19 tons per hectare, and the world average is 10 tons.[38]

The Salem Steel Plant, a unit of the Steel Authority of India, produces cold-rolled stainless steel and a hot-rolled stainless-carbon steel alloy. The plant is being expanded and modernized, with plans for steel-melting and continuous-casting facilities.[39] The Southern Iron and Steel Company (part of JSW Steel) have their first integrated steel plant in Salem for the production of TMT corrosion-resistant bars and alloy steels.[40][41] The Salem region is rich in mineral ores, with some of the largest magnesite and bauxite deposits in India. Public and private magnesite factories include Burn Standard and Company, Dalmia Magnesites and Tata Refractories.[42]

Salem Mango[43] belt contributes the economy in large scale by exporting mangoes to foreign countries and supplying mangoes all over India. The Leigh Bazaar is the region's largest market for agricultural products. The Tamil Nadu government and the Electronics Corporation of Tamil Nadu are planning a 160-acre (65 ha) IT park in the city.[44][45] The Steel Authority of India is planning a 250-acre (100 ha) steel special economic zone in its Salem plant,[46] and an electrical and electronics industrial estate is in the Suramangalam area of the city.[47]

Salem is also famous for its silver jewelry. Shevapet, Sivathapuram and Panangadu are the areas where the Silver Products are made in cottage industries. Salem produces World Class Artistic Silver Anklets, Toe Rings, Neck Chains, Pendents and Silverware. Salem has the presence of Multi-National Corporations, including Capgemini, First American (India) Financial Corporation (FAI), Whirlpool Warehouse, Vee Technologies, and SourceHOV LLC. The Tamil Nadu government is trying to get Hindustan Aeronautics Limited onboard to set up a manufacturing unit at Salem as the state has been chosen for establishing the Center's ambitious defense corridor project with Salem being one of the nodes.[48]

DemographicsEdit

 
Salem Government Multispeciality Hospital
Religious census
Religion Percent(%)
Hindu
89.79%
Muslim
7.48%
Christian
2.36%
Jain
0.11%
Sikh
0.02%
Buddhist
0.01%
Other
0.2%
No religion
0.02%

Salem had a population of 826,267 in the 2011 census. There were 987 females for every 1,000 males, significantly higher than the national average of 929. The main language spoken is Tamil. Kannada is spoken among Devanga community.[49] A total of 79,067 were under age six: 40,570 males and 38,497 females. The city's literacy rate was 76.37 percent, higher than the national average of 72.99 percent.[49] Salem had 215,747 households and a total of 332,147 workers: 1,599 farmers, 3,040 agricultural laborers, 32,597 in household industries, 278,892 other workers, 16,019 part-time workers, 165 part-time farmers, 544 part-time agricultural workers, 1,937 part-time workers in household industries and 13,373 other part-time workers.[2] As per the religious census of 2011, Salem had 89.79% Hindus, 7.48% Muslims, 2.36% Christians, 0.11% Jains, 0.02% Sikhs, 0.01% Buddhists, 0.2% following other religions and 0.02% following no religion or did not indicate any religious preference.[50]

CuisineEdit

Thattu vadai Set (or simply called as settu) is a savory snack and popular street food, which originated in Salem and is now available in other cities in Tamil Nadu like Chennai. It is a very famous street snack available at almost every small stall set up on the streets of Salem. The sandwich consists of two crunchy thattai discs with fillings such as crispy beetroot, carrot and other vegetables smeared with green and red chutneys. Norukkal Mix, another popular snack is smashed murukku mixed with chutney, groundnut, coconut, sliced tomatoes and Chillipowder (Molagapodi). Egg Settu, Murukku Settu and Maanga Settu are the different varieties of Thattu vadai Set .[51][52][53][54][55][56][57]

TransportEdit

 
Trumpet Exchange

RoadEdit

Salem has six arterial roads: Omalur Road, Cherry Road, Saradha College Road, Junction Main Road, Trichy Road and Attur Road. Three National Highways originate from or pass through Salem: NH 44 (Srinagar via Madurai and Tirunelveli Kanyakumari), NH 544 (Salem – Kochi via Erode and Coimbatore and Tiruppur )and NH 79 (Salem – Ulundurpet).[58]

Salem is the headquarters of the Salem division of TNSTC. The city has two major bus stations: the MGR Integrated Bus Terminus in Meyyanoor and the Town Bus Station (Old Bus Stand) in the town area. Intercity and interstate routes and private buses originate at the Central Bus Stand (New Bus Stand), and local buses originate at the Old Bus Stand. The Anna Flyover is the oldest in the city, and the Trumpet Interchange was built in the realignment of NH 544 to ease traffic towards Coimbatore. A new double-decker flyover runs within main city centres like New bus stand, 5 roads, saratha college road, 4 roads to ease congestion on these roads. It is the longest double-decker flyover in Tamil Nadu covering a length of 7.87 km.

The Town Bus terminus is being upgraded into a double decker bus terminus, the first of this kind in the state under the smart City scheme .[59] The terminal building of the New Bus terminus is also reconstructed under the smart City scheme.

A new bus port has also been proposed for the city at Jagirammapalayam near IT park with an area of about 61 acres. This includes a bypass road to connect the Ayothiapattinam area of the city with the bus port.[60]

Other bus stands include the Omalur bus station and Attayampatti bus station in the outskirts of the city.

RailEdit

Salem Junction is an A-1 category ISO-14001 certified[61] railway junction located in Suramangalam area, 5 kilometres (3.1 mi) west of the city. In 2005, the Railway Board approved the creation of a Salem railway division from Palakkad and Tiruchirapalli divisions. It is the fourth-largest of the six Southern Railway zone divisions. Salem Railway Junction has been rated as the cleanest station among the divisional headquarters railway stations and also the ninth cleanest railway station in the entire country, according to a survey report published in June 2017.[62] Other major railway stations catering to the city include Salem Town,[63] Salem Market, Omalur Junction, Karuppur railway station and Ayothiapattinam railway station.

AirEdit

 
Salem Airport

Salem Airport (IATA SXV, ICAO VOSM) is located on the Salem-Bengaluru Highway (NH44) in Kaamalapuram about 15 kilometres (9.3 mi) from the city. Airports Authority of India (AAI) opened the airport in 1993 for commercial operations. Kingfisher Airlines flew from Chennai but ended its service in October 2011 due to low occupancy. Trujet started services to Chennai in March 2018 as a part of the Udaan scheme by Government of India as well as Air Odisha gives connectivity to Bengaluru and Pondicherry from June 2018.[64][65][66][67] The nearest major airports are Tiruchirappalli (152 km) and Coimbatore (148 km).

SportsEdit

Gandhi Stadium, built originally for cricket, also hosts athletic meets, football, Volleyball and basketball.[68] Salem District Cricket Association (SDCA) has 47 teams in league cricket. The city has 2 international standard turf grounds. The Green Valley Sports club Cricket ground is on the outskirts of Salem city.[69][70] The state chief minister Edappadi K. Palaniswami inaugurated the Salem Cricket Foundation Stadium with international standards on 10 February 2020 in the presence of former cricketer Rahul Dravid and former ICC and BCCI president N. Srinivasan built at a cost of 3 crore (US$390,000) in Karivepilapatti near Vazhapadi.[71][72] This newly inaugurated ground is the home ground for Salem Spartans, a TNPL team and also the second home ground for the Indian Premier League team of Chennai Super Kings.[73][74]

T. Natarajan, who hails from Salem, made his international debut for the India cricket team in December 2020[75] He plays in the Indian Premier League for Sunrisers Hyderabad and is nicknamed as "Yorker King" for his accurate Yorkers at death overs in T20 games.[76] In the 2020 IPL season, delivered a whopping 96 yorkers in 16 IPL matches this year. He played a major role for India to win the Dettol T20 Series 2020 in Australia. [77]

Mariyappan Thangavelu from Salem is an Indian Paralympic high jumper. He represented India in the 2016 Summer Paralympic games held in Rio de Janeiro in the men's high jump T-42 category, winning the gold medal in the finals.[78]

City-based teamsEdit

Club Sport League Home Stadium Founded
Salem Spartans Cricket Tamil Nadu Premier League Salem Cricket Foundation Stadium[79] 2016

TourismEdit

Shopping and recreationEdit

 
Mookaneri Lake is a beautiful natural lake located in Salem near Kannakuruchi foothills of Yercud

Salem's traditional shopping areas are in the Town area, with major retailers in Bazaar Street, Car Street, First Agraharam and Chinna Kadai Street. Shevapet and the Fort area are noted for hardware and furniture, and Leigh Bazaar in Shevapet is the main wholesale market.

Reliance Shopping Mall, the city's largest shopping mall is situated near Five Roads. Other malls in the city are Nirmal Skywin Mall and Kandaswarna Mega Mall.[80] Luxury star hotels hotels are Radisson Hotel Salem, Grand Estancia, Hotel Cenneys Gateway, Sibe Salem by GRT Hotels, CJ Pallazio Hotel and Sivraj Inn.[81]

Kurumbapatti Zoological Park and Anna Park are government-run parks.[82] Paravasa Ulagam[83] and Dream Land are amusement parks in the city. Mookaneri (Kannankurichi) within the city limits is a popular tourist place and bird watching destination.[84][85][86]

Yercaud, a major hill station in Tamil Nadu is about 20 KM from Salem City. The ghat road starts at the end of the Salem City limits. The ghat road is a picturesque spot and attracts a lot of early morning walkers and joggers. Yercaud is also a famous weekend getaway for the people of Salem and nearby districts and states.

Religious landmarksEdit

 
Sugavaneshwarar Temple in Salem, Tamil Nadu, India
 
1008 Lingam temple in the city

Salem has a number of Hindu temples. The Kottai Mariamman Temple, dedicated to the goddess Mariamman, has an annual five-day festival during the Tamizh month of Aadi (mid-July to mid-August).[87] The temple's gopuram is made up of seven tiers. Sugavaneshwarar Temple is dedicated to Shiva, and according to mythology the sage Sugha Brahmarishi worshiped here. Arunagirinadhar sang a song about Muruga in the temple, which was built during the 13th century by Mamannan Sundara Pandiyan.[88] Kottai Perumal Temple, Skandhashram,[89]

Jamia Masjid, on the southern bank of the Thirumanimutharu River in the heart of the city, is Salem's oldest mosque. It was reportedly built by the Kingdom of Mysore ruler Tipu Sultan, who is said to have prayed here. The Masjid Inam granted to the mosque in 1862 was confirmed by the British with a special resolution in 1880.[90][91][92]

Christ Church is located on Fort Road and the church was consecrated in 1875.[93] The other popular churches in and around the city includes Lechler Memorial Church, the oldest church in Salem, was built in 1856 by a German missionary in Fort Salem.[94]

EducationEdit

 
Vinayaka Missions University
 
Montfort School Church, Yercaud, Salem
 
Salem Periyar University
 
Women at an all women's school in Salem, Tamil Nadu, India

Salem has several educational institutions with Arts and Science colleges affiliated to Periyar University founded in 1997.

Sister citiesEdit

Salem has one sister city:

As of 2014, there was talk of reviving the now-stagnant Sister City project launched in 1964 with Salem in Oregon, USA.[104]

Notable peopleEdit

PoliticsEdit

MediaEdit

SportsEdit

Arts, entertainment and televisionEdit

Mathematics, science and technologyEdit

Salem DayEdit

The Salem city was formed on 1 November 1866. Salem City Municipal Council celebrated its Centenary in 1966. Fittingly the Municipality was upgraded into a special grade Municipality on 1 April 1979. The Centurion Municipality was declared as the Salem City Municipal Corporation from 1 June 1994. The date of formation of Salem city is recognised as Salem day and it is celebrated by the people all over the city. Salem city celebrates its birthday every year on the 1st of November.

See alsoEdit

ReferencesEdit

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External linksEdit

  •   Salem, Tamil Nadu travel guide from Wikivoyage
  • NIC website for Salem, Tamil Nadu
  • Police and prisons
  • "Salem" . The New Student's Reference Work . 1914.