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Mr. W. A. Happen.


1 Sept. 1879.

Mr. P. P. inutchins.


28 March 1881.

Mr. E. Turner.


1 May 1881.

Mr. P. P. Hutchins.


6 July 1881.

Mr.C. W. W. Martin.


17 Nov. 1881.

Mr. E. Turner.


28 Feb. 1882.

Mr. P. P. Hutchins.


7 Dec. 1882.

Mr. E. Turner.


1 Sept. 1884.

Mr. T. Weir.


10 Sept. ] 886.

Mr. L. Moore.


23 Oct. 1886.

Mr. T Weir.


2 March 1888.

Mr. n. T. Ross.


1 Sept. 1890.

Mr. J. Twigg.


1 Jan. 1891.

Mr. T. Weir.


27 July 1891.

Mr. S. Kussell (Additional Sessions Judge).


5 March 1892.

Mr. S. H. Wynne.


9 Jan. 1893.

Mr. J. W. F. Duraergue.


8 April 1896.

Mr. G. E. L. Campbell.


22 June 1896.

Mr. A. F. Pinhey.


24 Oct. 1896.

Mr. S. Russell.


28 Feb. 1S99.

Mr. H. Moborly.


7 April 1905.

Mr. J. Hevvetson.


9 March 1906.

Mr. A. F. Pinhey. 1






The Local

The Unions.

The Local Board3— The Unions— Finances of the Boards. The five munici-
palities — Madura municipality — Improvements effected by it — The water-
supply scheme— Drainage — Dindignl municipality — Water-supply — Palni
municipality — Periyaknlam municipality — Kodaikanal municipality.

Outside the five municipalities referred to below, local affairs are
managed hj the District Board and the four taluk boards of
Dindigul, Madura, Melur and Tirumangalam. The jurisdictions of
the first and last of these latter correspond with those of the divisional
officers of Dindigul and Tirumangalam, and the Madura and Melur
taluk boards have charge respectively of the taluks after which
they are named. When the Local Boards Act of 1884 was first
introduced into the district, the three taluks of Dindigul, Pakii
(which then included Kodaikanal) and Periyakulam had each their
own taluk board ; the charge of the Tirumangalam board included
so much of the Madura taluk as lay south of the Vaigai ; and the
rest of Madura and aU Melur were directly under the District
Board. Early in 1887 the part of Madura south of the Vaigai
was transferred to the care of this latter body, and later in the
same year the Madura and Melur taluk boards were constituted.
The Dindigul, Palni and Periyakulam boards were amalgamated
in 1894.

Nineteen of the larger villages have been constituted unions.
Under the Dindigul board are those at Ayyampalaiyam, Ayakkudi,
Bodinayakkanur, Chinnamanur, Gudalur, Kalayamuttur (Neikkara-
patti), Kambam, Kilamangalam, Melamangalam, Uttamap^laiyam
and Vedasandur ; under the Melur board, those at Melur and
Nattam ; and under the Tirumangalam board those at Nilakkottai,
Feraiyur, Solavandan, Tirumangalam, Usilampatti and Vattila-
gundu. Of these, Nilakkottai was established in L'^SS, Gudalur
in 1901 , and all the rest in 1885. As elsewhere, the chief item in
their income is the house-tax, and this is levied at the maximum
rates allowed by the Act in aU of them except Solavandan and
Tirumangalam (where it is collected at three-quarters of this
maximum) and Peraiyur and Usilampatti, in which only half rates
are charged. The incidence per house is lowest (nine annas or
less) in Kalayamuttur and Ayakkudi, and highest (Re. 1-10-2) in


the; flourishing town of Bodinayakkanur. In 1905 the Collector CHAP. XJV.
suggested that the last-named place, sanitary conditions in which The Local
have long been unsatisfactory, should be constituted a munici- 0*^8.
pality, but Government vetoed the proposal.

The separate Appendix to this volume contains statistics of the Finances of
receipts and expenditure of the boards and unions. Including the ^® °^^ "*
figures for the Eamnad and Sivaganga zamindaris, the incidence
of local taxation per head of the population, both including and
excluding the receipts from toUs, and also the similar incidence of
the total local fund receipts, are greatly below the average for the
Presidency as a whole, or the level in the adjoining districts of
Tanjore and I'innevelly. The figure is brought down by the
unusually low incidence in the country under the Dindigul and
Tirumangalam boards, and the inference arises that these areas are
by no means overtaxed.

The chief source of the receipts is the land-cess, which is levied
at the usual rate of one anna per rupee of the land assessment.
Next comes the house-tax, and then the toUs, which are fixed at
three-fourths of the maximum rates allowed by the Act. Other
conspicuous items are the income from markets, which is larger
than in any other district except Coimbatore, and that from the
produce of the avenue trees, which is exceeded only in South Arcot
and Salem.

The principal objects on which local funds are expended are
(as usual) the roads, the hospitals and dispensaries, and the
schools. These have already been referred to in Chapters VII,
IX and X respectively.

The five municipal towns are Madura, Dindigul, Palni, The five
Periyakulam and Kodaikanal. The first two of these places were '^'.'rfJr^I
originally constituted municipalities on 1st November 1866 under
the old Towns Improvement Act X of 1865, and continued as such
under that enactment's successors, the Towns Improvement Act
III of 1871 and the present District Municipalities Act. The
Palni and Periyakulam municipalities were founded much later.
A committee which reported in 1884 on the extension of local
self-government in this Presidency recommended that us a general
role all places which had 10,000 inhabitants and upwards and were
also the head-quarters of a tahsildar or deputy tahsildar should be
turned into municipalities. Both Palni and Perijakulam came
within this description and on 1st April 1886, in spite of the
vehement protests of their population, they were constituted
municipal towns accordingly. Kodaikanal was made a munici-
pality on 1st October 1899. It is much the smallest in the



The five



by it.

The water-



The medical and educational institutions maintained by tlie
councils of these various towns have been referred to in Chapters
IX and X respectively, and it remains to consider their other
permanent undertakings.

The Madura municipal council consisted in 1884 of sixteen
members, of whom seven were elected b_y the rate-payers and the
rest nominated by Government. In the next year the number on
the council was raised to 24, of whom 18 were elected. Soon
afterwards factions arose, and by 1891 disunion had reached such
a pitch that Government deprived the council of the power of
electing its own chairman. The privilege was restored in 1896.
A paid secretary to assist the chairman was appointed in 1898, but
the step was not altogether a success and in L902 the council
decided to have as chairman a f uU-time officer on a salary of from
Es. 400 to Ks. 600. This arrangement still continues. The
addition of another ex-officio member has now raised the total
strength of the council to 25.

The permanent visible improvements effected by this body
since it was first established are many. In 1871-72 a municipal
office was provided by altering, at a cost of Hs. 5,000, an outlying
building belonging to Tirumala Nayakkan's palace. In the same
year was put up the clock which adorns one of the two turrets at
the east end of the palace. In 1 873 the then maternity hospital
was extended at a cost of Es. 2,500 and in July 1876 the branch
dispensary, on which Es. 18,000 had been spent, was opened. In
1884 the causeway across the Vaigai was put in thorough repair,
trees were planted in the streets, the People^s Park referred to on
p. 264, was formed and the first water-supply project (see below)
was carried into effect ; and at about the same time the council
subscribed Rs. 10,000 to the bridge across the Vaigai (see p. 156)
which was opened in 1889. The latest notable undertakings have
been the opening of the dispensary for women and children in
1894, the laying out of the garden called the Edward Park which
was opened on Coronation Day, and the provision of the greater
part of the cost of the erection of the excellent new range of
buildings for the hospital referred to on p. 172.

The first water-supply project for Madura was suggested as
long ago as 1849. The scheme consisted in widening the Pallava-
rayan channel, which takes off from the Yaigai about 4^ miles
above Madura, and leading it along a high earthen embankment
into a reservoir in the town. The supply would have been very
fitful, as the water only reached the channel on the rare occasions
when the river was in fresh. It was intended to utilise the water,



not only for drinking, but for flusliing the side-channels in the CHAP. XIV
streets. An estimate for Es. 28,600 was sanctioned in 1851. By The hvr
18$9, Bs 20,000 had been spent, but the work was still unfinished polities.

and it was calculated that Rs. 18,800 more than the amount of the

original estimate would be required. In 18fJ2, 1863 and 1864
fresh estimates were sanctioned, and the expenditure eventually
amounted to Rs. 51,200. The project, however, was never com-
pleted. In the seventies several other schemes were suggested
or discussed, but none of them ever came to anything.^

In 1884 a new scheme, due to Mr. Crole, the then Collector,
was carried out. This consisted in sinking a masonry well in
the bed of the V^aigai (near the Maya mantapam just above the
Yaigai bridge) to tap the copious undej-flow of that river, and
pumping the water thence by steam to an iron cistern placed 27 feet
above the ground near the 'elephant stone' (seep. 267) at the
southern end of the causeway. Water was also supplied to the
golden-lily tank in the Minakshi temple on the trustees of that
institution paying the cost of the pipes. This, the first regular
water-supply scheme in the Madras Presidency, was a great
success as far as it went. The high floods of November 1884 did
some damage to the well and the pipe, but in the next year a
bigger pump was put down, another well was sunk and linked
with the first, larger pipes were laid and another cistern was put
up near Blackburne's lamp (see p. 267). By the end of the
year 1887-88 a third well had been made and the pipes had been
carried through seventeen streets containing nearly two-fifths of
the total population of the town. The outlay had amounted to
Es. 70,000.

The rapid increase in the population of the town necessitated
still more water, however, and it became evident that a more
comprehensive scheme was essential. Eventually Mr. J. A. Jones,
then Sanitary Engineer to Government, designed the project which
is now working. This was sanctioned in 1892. The cost of it
was Rs. 4,27,050 and Government made a free grant of half this
sum and lent the council Es. 1,96,000 in addition. The project
consisted in tapping the underflow in the Vaigai by erecting a
barrage wall across the river at a point so far above the town as to
be safe from contamination, making a filtration gallery just above
this wall, running the filtered water thus collected into a well on
the bank, and thence raising it by steam pumps to a point from
which it would supply the town by gravitation. The annual
charges for the extinction of the loan from Government in thirty

^ See Iht luater-supply of Madura by Mr. J. E. O'fihaughnessy, Madras, 1888.



The FiVK



years were estimated to be Rs. 12,868 and for pumping- Es. 19,885,
making the total cost of maintaining the scheme Rs. 32,753.

The work was completed in two years and opened on 1st May
1894. But long before it was finished the discovery was made
that the barrage wall had been placed by Mr. Jones in a most
unfortunate spot. This had been selected chiefly on engineering
grounds, because it was believed that the superficial area of the
water-bearing strata there was larger than elsewhere ; but as a
matter of fact a ridge of rocks runs across the river-bed not far
above the barrage wall and turns the underflow out of the bed into
subterranean ways to the west, through which it eventually finds
its way back into the river opposite the town, but below the barrage
wall. The big well at the spinning-mill near the railway-station
taps one of these underground springs and contains an extra-
ordinary supply, but the amount available at the barrage was
quite unequal to the demand.

An attempt was made to meet this radical defect in the scheme
by carrying the filtration gallery right across the bed at an additional
cost of Rs. 22,000. This did but little good, so in February 1895
a collecting channel was excavated for some 1 ,300 yards upstream
from the barrage. This was filled up by a fresh a couple of months
later. It was excavated again in July in the same year and the
filtration gallery was also covered with gravel, instead of sand, to
assist percolation. In 1899 the supply was temporarily increased
in the dry season by opening the sand-sluices in the Chittanai
anient and letting some of the Periyar water down the river, but
there are many objections to the systematic adoption of this course,
and after much discussion an estimate for Rs. 1,32,000 has been
drawn up for cutting a trench for some 3,350 yards up the bed,
through the ridge of rocks above mentioned, and laying in it an
18-inch stoneware pipe. This is now before the council.

A scheme for the drainage of that part of the town which is
bounded by the four Masi streets, the population of which is about
23,000, was completed in 1902. It was designed on the Shone
system and provides for leading the sewage into four ejector stations
serving an equal number of separate areas and actuated by com-
pressed air supplied through iron pipes from a central station. The
sewage thus collected was to be passed into a sealed iron main
under pressure and thence through a detritus tank and bacterial
filters to a farm of about 177 acres on which sugar-cane and forage
crops were to be grown. The estimates amounted to 6| lakhs and
the annual charges, including establishment and provision for a
sinking fund, to about Rs. 47,000. Against this had to be set the
profit from the farm, which was put at Es. 29,000 annually.


Government considered tliat tlie scheme was clearly beyond the CIIAP. XlV.
resources of the municipality, and tlie Sanitary Board accordingly The fivk
so revised it as to reduce the cost to 3| lakhs. The reduction was palitikh,

effected by substituting- pumping by oil-engines for the Shone

system of raising the sewage ; by simplifpng the treatment of the
sewage at the outfall ; and by reducing the area of the proposed
farm. The Sanitary Board calculated that, adopting these prin-
ciples, a scheme for the whole town could be carried out for ten
laklis and that the annual maintenance charges would amount to
Rs. 63,000. Government have asked the Sanitary Engineer to
prepare detailed estimates for such a scheme.

The Dindigul council consists of fourteen members, of whom Dindigul
nine are elected by the rate-payers. This privilege of election was municipality,
conferred in 1884 and in the next year the council was first given
permission to elect its own chairman. The chief permanent
improvements carried out in the tovni have been the construction
of the market (first erected in 1872 at a cost of Hs. 3,500 and
since added to at a further outlay of Rs. 7,500) and the inauguration
of a water-supply scheme.

The first attempt to provide the town with good water was Water-
made in 1 885 by Mr. Crole, and consisted in pumping a supply ^^PP^J-
from a well sunk in a neighbouring tank to a service reservoir
whence it was distributed by pipes. It failed because the water
.was of bad quality.

In 1890 the Sanitary Engineer proposed a scheme which
provided for collecting a supply in an underground tunnel cut in
the soft rock to the west of the railway line, and for pumping it
thence to the town. Tlie estimate was for Rs. 71,700 and the
annual working charges were put at Rs. 5,51 1 . Government sanc-
tioned this in the next year and gave half the cost from Provincial
Funds. Work was begun in 1892, but experiments showed that
the supply of water in the rock was very doubtful and Government
therefore ordered that the tunnel should be made in the first
instance from Provincial Funds and should only be charged to the
council if it was a success. By 1894 a tunnel 540 feet lono- ]iad
been driven and a supply estimated at J-,000 gallons an hour was
obtained, and the rest of the scheme was accordingly put in hand.
The work was finished in August 1896 and consists of a g-allery
8 feet wide and 5il feet long, with lateral adits, tunnelled through
soft rock 44 feet below ground level, two steam pumps, a service
reservoir capable of liolding 91,000 gallons, and the necessary
piping and hydrants,




The Five




T]ie yield from the gallery, liowever, belied its first promise
and soon fell to only 6f-,000 gallons in the 24 hours. It was at
first proposed to meet the diflSculty by extending the tunnel, but
eventually it was decided to dig a new trench in another site, the
Odukkam valley. After several trials had been made and several
rival schemes projected, Government eventually sanctioned, in
IDO-i", a proposal to cul a trench about 20 feet deep and -^00 yards
long in the valley, nearly fill this with broken stone in which were
embedded three rows of earthenware pipes one above the other,
close the top of it with sand, and lead the water thus collected and
filtered to the town by gravitation. The estimates amounted
to Hs. 51,900 and Government made a free grant of half this suni
and lent the council Rs. 1 6,8(^0 more on the usual terms. The
work was completed in 1905 but the supply is disappointing.

The Palni council consists of twelve members, of whom four
have been elected since 1897. The chairman is appointed by
Government. The council's chief undertaking has been to pro-
vide itself with an office at a cost of lis. 4,000, but in addition
a slaughter-house has been built and improvements have been
effected to the hospital and the medical officer's quarters. The
present water-supply is from the Vyupuri tank, into which the
whole drainage of the town flows uninterruptedly. Consequently
cholera is common enough, and is sometimes carried hence all
over the country by the pilgrims to the Subrahmanya shrine in
the town, ^he richer classes get water brought in from the
Shanmuganadi. Schemes for running an intercepting sewer round
the foreshore of the tank and for pumping water from the river
have been suggested, but they are beyond the means of the
council, and the present policy is to endeavour to check the
pollution of the foreshore of the tank.

Tlie Periyakulam council is constituted like that of Palni.
Except that it has built a small hospital and a choultry, ix, has
done nothing outside the usual routine duties. Drinking-water is
obtained from the Vardhanadi, which flows through the middle of
the town and receives the whole of the drainage from either bank.
The Berijam project, referred to on page 125, will shortly,
however, render available a purer supply. A great need in
Periyakulam. is a bridge (or at least a causeway) across the
Varahanadi. All the heavy traffic from Bodinayakkanur and the
Kambam valley has to cross this river, and is at present often
blocked for days together by freshes ; while even when only a little
water is passing down, the cart-bullocks have to be shamefully
thrashed and ;;oaded to get them through the clinging mud of



wMcli the bed consists. The municipality is constructing a
suspension bridge for foot-passengers across the river at an
estimated cost of Rs. 7,100.

The Kodaikanal council consists of twelve members, none of
whom are elected. The drinking-water of the station is at present
obtained from wells and springs. In 1902 a scheme for an im-
proved supply was worked out. This included the construction of
a storage tank on tlio Pi^mbar (the catchment area of which has
already been reserved by Government to protect it from pollution)
by damming it about ^70 yards above the Fairy Falls, and the
conveyance of the water by a pipe througli the embankment to a
cistern jast below this, thence al^ng an open channel 1,450 yards
in length to a service reservoir on a ridge commanding the place,
and thence throughout the station, by pipes. Any surplus was to
be led into the lake, the supply to which is often less than the
evaporation and leakage through the bund. The estimate was
Es. 49,000 and the annual charges, including working expenses
and sinking fund, Es. 4,300. Subsequently it was considered
essential that the dam should be of masonry. This raised the cost
to Rs. 62,250. 'Ihe municipal council professed its inability to
finance the scheme, and the question of Government assistance is
under consideration. The project would not command houses built
either along the Pillar l?ocks road or in the Tinnevelly settlement,
the two directions in which alone any large extension of the station
is possible.

TnK irivE





DiNUiGUL Taluk — Agnram — Ambaturai — Xttdr — AyyampSlaiyam— Dindigul —
Emakkalapuram — Eriyodu— Kaimivadi— Kiivakkapatti — Madur— Mariinuttu

— Palakkanuttu— Sukkanipatti-Tadikkombu — TaTasimadai— Y^dasanddt.
KoDAiKANAi- Taluk- Kodaikanal. ]\[adura Taluk— Anaimalai — Anuppanadi

— Kodimangalam — Madura — MaDgulam — Pasunialai — Sirupalai — Tirup-
parankunram — Velliyakuiidam. Melur Taluk — Alagarkovil — Aiittapatti —
Karungftlakudi— Kottar-patti— Melur-Nattam— Tiruvadur. Nilakkottai
Taluk - Ammayanayakkandr — Kulas4kharaiik6ttai — Mettuppatti — Nilakkot-
tai — Sandaiyur — Solavandan — Tiniv6dagam — Tottiyankottai — Vattilap;Dudu.
Palni Taluk — Aivarmalai — Ayakkudi — Idaiyankottai — Kalayaniuttur—
Kirandr — Mambarai - Palni — Rettayambadi — V61ur — Yirupakshi. Periya-
KULAM Taluk — Allinagaram — Andipatti — Aniirriandanpatti — Hodinayak-
kanur — Chin nam an dr — Devadanapatti — Erasakkanayakkandr — Gantaniana-
yakkanur — Gddaldr — Kambam — Kombai — Maigaiyaukdttai — Periyakulam

— T^varam — Uttamapalaiyam — Vadakarai — Yi'rapandi. Tirumangalam
Taluk — Anaij-dr — Doddappanayakkanur — Elumalai— Jotilnayakkantir —
Kalligudi — Kilakkottai — Kovilankulani — Knppalanattam — M^lakkdttai —
Nadukkottai — Peraiydr — Puliyankulam — Sandaiyur — S6ptur -Tirumanga-
lam — Usilampatti — Uttappanayakkandr — Yikkiramangalam.


CHAP. XY. DiNDiGUL (formerly called the Tadikkombu) taluk occupies the
Dindioul. north-east corner of the district and consists of an open plain of
red land surrounded on the east by the Ailur hills and the Karan-
damalais, on the south by the Sirumalai?, and on the west by tlie
Lower Palnis and the little range of rocky heights running south
from the Eangamalai and Karumalai peaks. The taluk slopes
sharply northwards from the pass between the Sirumalais and
Palnis and is drained in that direction by the Kodavandr and its
many tributaries. Next to Palni, Dindigul gets less rain than any
part of the district and it has practically no irrigation channels.
Consequently most of the land is dependent upon local rain, and the
tract suffered severely in the great famine of 1876-78. Nearly a
third of it is cultivated with cholam, and large areas are also cropped
with cambu and samai. Dindigul tobacco is well known. Like
Palni, the taluk is famous for its numerous wells, and as much as
9 per cent, of its irrigated area is watered by them.


Statistics regarding- Dindigul will Le found in tlie separate CHAP. XV.
Appendix to this volume. After Peri) akulam, it is tlie largest of Dindigul.
the Madura taluks and it contains more people, and also more
Musalmans and Cliristians, than any of them. The climate is
reputed to be particularly healthy. Tlie chief commercial and
industrial centre is Dindigul, and accounts of tliis and the other

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