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Nellore district

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Title: Nellore district  
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Nellore district

Nellore district
నెల్లూరు జిల్లా
District of Andhra Pradesh
Location of Nellore district in Andhra Pradesh
Location of Nellore district in Andhra Pradesh
Country India
State Andhra Pradesh
Administrative division Nellore district
Headquarters Nellore
Tehsils 46[1]
 • Lok Sabha constituencies Nellore (Lok Sabha constituency)
 • Assembly seats 10
 • Total 13,076 km2 (5,049 sq mi)
Population (2011)
 • Total 2,966,082[2]
 • Urban 29.07%
 • Literacy 69.15%
 • Sex ratio 986
Major highways NH 5
Website Official website

Nellore district (or Sri Potti Sriramulu Nellore district), located in Coastal Andhra region, is one of the 13 districts of Andhra Pradesh. The population of the district according to the Census 2011 was 2,966,082 of which 29.07% were urban. Nellore city is its administrative headquarters. The district is bordered by the Bay of Bengal to the east, Kadapa district to the west, Prakasam District to the north, Chittoor district and Thiruvallur district of Tamil Nadu to the south.[2]


  • Etymology 1
  • History 2
    • Mauryas, early Cholas and Pallavas 2.1
    • Nellore Chola kings 2.2
    • Kakatiyas, Pandyas and Vijanagaras 2.3
    • The Nawabs and the British period 2.4
    • Post Indian Independence 2.5
  • Geography 3
    • Climate 3.1
  • Demographics 4
  • Economy 5
    • Agriculture 5.1
    • Industry 5.2
  • Divisions 6
  • Transport 7
    • Art and literature 7.1
  • Notable people from the district 8
  • Flora and fauna 9
  • References 10
  • Further reading 11
  • External links 12


According to Gazetteer of the Nellore District the word Nellore is combination of two Tamil words Nel+oor(நெல் + ஊர் = நெல்லூர்) which means Paddy Town in Tamil language. In June 2008, Government of Andhra Pradesh officially renamed the district as Sri Potti Sri Ramulu Nellore District after the freedom fighter and revolutionary Potti Sri Ramulu, who died fasting in an attempt to achieve the formation of a separate state for the Telugu people.[3]


Mauryas, early Cholas and Pallavas

With the rise of the Mauryan Empire, many parts of the Andhra Pradesh including Nellore came under its influence and was part of the Ashoka empire in the third century B.C. The caves near Nellore have inscriptions in the brahmi script used by Ashoka. The Cholas were an important dynasty in the south peninsula. The early Cholas ruled between the 1st and the 4th centuries A.D. The earliest chola inscription from 1096 A.D. was found at Jummaluru. The district was part of the first and the most famous Chola, Karikalan. He was well known for his great engineering marvel.

Chola power declined with frequent attacks by the Pallavas, Cheras and Pandyas, until they rose to power again around the 9th century. Chola rule was broken when the Cholas were overthrown by Simha Vishnu Pallava and the region came under the Pallava rule between the fourth and sixth centuries A.D. With the dawn of the seventh century, the political centre of Gravity of the Pallavas shifted to the south and weakened their power towards the north. Several ancient Pallava and Chola temples are in Udayagiri village. Several inscriptions about Pallava rule were found in the Guntur-Nellore tract of the Andhra Pradesh. The big four storeyed cave at Vundavalli and 8 cave temple at Bhairavkonda resembles the Pallava architecture during Mahendravarma's period.

Nellore Chola kings

This was the period when the political power of Nellore was at its peak and also reached its ebb. Tikkana Somayajulu, a minister and famous Telugu poet who translated Mahabharatham into Telugu, gave the account of the history of this family in his other book called Nirvachanottara Ramayanamu. A branch of Telugu Cholas, feudatory of the Western Chalukyas of Kalyani appointed them as rulers of Pakanadu for helping in the war between Cholas and Chalukyas. They ruled over the region consisting of the Nellore, Kadapa, Chittur and Chengalput districts with Vikramasimhapuri (modern Nellore) as their head capital.

Tikka (1223–1248) defeated both the Hoyasala and the Pandyas and got the Tondaimandalam region and assumed the title Cholasthapanacharya. During the reign of Tikka's son and successor Manumasiddhi II (1248–1263), Nellore faced lot of attacks from other Chalukyas and Pandyas. Tikkana visited Ganapatideva of Kakatiyas and gained military support for his king. About the year 1260, a dangerous feud broke out between Manumasiddhi and Katamaraju, the chief of Erragaddapadu in Kanigiri region. The feud was on the issue of the rights of the two princes to use certain wide meadows as grazing grounds for their flocks of cattle. It led to the bloody battle fought at Panchalingala near Muttukuru on the coast of river Penna. Manumasiddhi's forces led by Khadga Tikkana, the cousin of poet Tikkana won the battle, but the leader perished. This feud and the consequent battle formed the theme of the popular ballad entitled "Katamaraju Katha". Shortly after or during this battle, Manumasiddhi died and Nellore lost its significance.

Kakatiyas, Pandyas and Vijanagaras

The Kakatiyas, the feudatories of the Western Chalukyas of Kalyani, under influence of Prola declared his independence. Ganapati Deva, the first great king of Kakatiyas brought most of the Telugu area under his rule. Nellore was part of kakatiya kingdom in the 13th century. It changed hands between them and Pandyas few times until Prataprudra II defeated Pandyas. After the fall of Kakatiya Empire, the region was under Tuglaq and then was later under Kondavidi Reddis.

The most parts of the district were annexed by the Sangama dynasty of the Vijayanagara empire in the 14th century. The remaining portions of the district like Udayagiri were conquered in 1512 by Krishnadeva Rayalu, the greatest king of the kingdom. The ruins of fortress built by the Vijayanagar kings in the 14th century are at Udayagiri.

The Nawabs and the British period

After the fall of the Vijayanagara Empire, the area was ruled by the Nawabs. It was under rule of Najeebullah, the brother of Arcot Nawab in 1753. The district witnessed wars between Najeebullah and Nawab with support from French at Machilipatnam and British at Madras. Army under colonel Cailluad took over Nellore fort in 1762 and handed it over to Nawab. On the assignment of revenues, Nawab Ajim Ud Duaula gave Nellore town back in 1781 and gave the rest of the district to East India company in 1801. East India Company had taken control appointed Mr. Dyton as the 1st Collector. Nellore was declared the revenue unit for the district.[4]

During the British period, the district was at peace, the only event of any political importance being the sequestration in 1838, of the Jagir of Udayagiri, owing to its title holder's participation in a conspiracy, engineered by the Nawab of Kurnool, against the ruling power. After the district came under the British administration, the jurisdiction of the district did not undergo any major changes, but for the transfer of Ongole taluk in 1904 to Guntur district when it was newly constituted.

Post Indian Independence

It was part of the composite linguistic basis, the district came under Andhra Pradesh. Nellore played a major role in the formation of Andhra Pradesh state. Potti Sriramulu, a Telugu patriot and activist, fasted to death for the formation of Andhra Pradhesh state.

Nellore people participated in Indian Independence movement. Notable freedom fighters are Muttharaju Gopalarao and Potti Sriramulu. Nellore has produced two former chief ministers of state, Dr Bezawada Gopala Reddy and Nedurumalli Janardhana Reddy. The main political parties of the district are YSR Congress and Telugu Desam party. Communist parties of India also have more followers compared to the neighboring districts like Kadapa and Ongole. Puchalapalli Sundaraiah, a founding member of the Communist Party of India (Marxist), attempted to establish communism here.

In 1970, part of Nellore district was split off to become part of Prakasam district.[5]

Damaramadugu rice fields in Nellore District


The district lies between 13 30’ and 15 6’ of Northern latitude and 70 5’ and 80 15’ of Eastern latitude. Nellore's total land area is 13,076 square kilometers (8,761) sq. miles. It is bordered by the Bay of Bengal to the east, the state of Rayalaseema to the South, the district of Cuddapah, and the district of Prakasam to the north. The eastern side consists of area of low lying land extending from the base of the Eastern Ghats to the sea. The west side of the district is separated from Cuddapah district by Veligonda hills. The district is split by the River Pennar and is located on both south and north banks of it.

Nellore district occupies an area of 13,076 square kilometres (5,049 sq mi),[6] comparatively equivalent to the Philippines' Negros Island.[7] It has an average elevation of 19 metres (62 feet).

About the half of the total area is cultivated and the rest is wasteland[8] because of it is rocky land, sandy coastline or covered with scrub jungles. Pennar, Swarnamukhi and Gundlakamma are the main rivers that flow through the most of the district. They are not navigable, and are mainly used for irrigation purposes. Tributaries to Penna like Kandaleru and Boggeru serve the remaining area. This area is rich in particular kind of flint called quartzite, out of which the prehistoric man made his weapons and implements.


The maximum temperature is 36-46c during summer and the minimum temperature is 23-25c during winter. The rainfall ranges from 700–1000 mm through South West and North East Monsoons. Nellore is subjected to both droughts and floods based on the seasons.


According to the 2011 census, Nellore district has a population of 2,966,082,[9] roughly equal to the nation of Armenia[10] or the US state of Mississippi.[11] This gives it a ranking of 126th in India (out of a total of 640).[9] The district has a population density of 227 inhabitants per square kilometre (590/sq mi).[9] Its population growth rate over the decade 2001–2011 was 11.15%.[9] Sri Potti Sriramulu Nellore has a sex ratio of 986 females for every 1000 males,[9] and a literacy rate of 69.15%.[9]

The population of the district was 29,66,082 of which 22.45% were urban as of 2011.[12] Total population has reached up to 7 lakhs according to recent assembly elections census. Telugu is spoken by a majority of the people in the district, while Tamil is spoken by a few in the southern parts and southern coastal region of the district.[13]


Proximity to the sea as well as to agricultural heartland has helped Nellore district to grow. The seaborne trade from Mypadu, Krishnapatnam and other port cities in district is on rise, but insignificant compared to trade via the road and rail.


Nellore is also famous for quality rice production and aqua (prawn and fish) culture. Nellore district is called the "Shrimp capital of India" due to its high production of cultured shrimp. About 70 percent of the total work force is dependent upon agriculture either as farmers or as agricultural labour. The main crops are rice paddy and sugar cane. It is particularly famous for a rice breed called "Molagolukulu". Other crops are cotton, lemon and oil seeds (like peanuts) and horticultural seeds.

A dam is located at Somasila across the Pennar River that flows through the narrow Velikonda Hills. Another dam is located at Gandipalem across a tributary of Pennar. They support irrigation for many villages.


The handloom sector is a small scale industry and next to agriculture by the number of people depend on it. Venkatagiri and Patur are important handloom centres in the district noted for their traditional handcrafted fine cotton and silk sarees embrodied with pure zari.

Krishnapatnam is a major port and market center situated at a distance of 20 km. The port is expected to become a world-class deep-water port. Iron ore and granite are being exported from Krishna Patnam to other countries like China. One railway line links it with Vekatachalam on main railway line. Tada is at a distance of 80 km from Nellore with new industrial ventures like the Adidas factory and Tata's Leather park. An International Leather park project is in progress developed at Krishnapatnam.


Revenue divisions map of Nellore district
Nellore district mandals outline map

The district comprises five Revenue Divisions viz., Atmakur, Naidupet, Nellore, Gudur and Kavali.[14] The 46 mandals are under these divisions. It also has 2 municipalities of Gudur and Kavali, with one municipal corporation of Nellore.[15]


The list of 46 mandals in Nellore District are:[16]


National Highway 5 serves the major towns of Sullurpeta, Naidupeta, Gudur, Nellore, Kovur and Kavali in the district. The nearest international airport is at Chennai, 170 km to the south. The national railway runs throughout the length of the district. Nellore is situated between Gudur Junction and Vijayawada Junction on the ChennaiHowrah main line. A railway line is being constructed from Krishnapatnam to Obulavari palle to link up this port with Mumbai Railway line. Rail Line is completed up to Venkatachalam junction connecting Nellore, Chennai cities.

Krishnapatnam Port is one of the important port situated in the district on the coast of Bay of Bengal.[17] Another port, named as Dugarajapatnam Port is a proposed port in the district.[18]

Art and literature

The most famous Dargah (holy tomb) in AP State Barashaheed dargah is located in Nellore. Every year some lakhs of people visit dargah and receive holy blessings there. The most widely followed culture and festival Rottela Panduga is celebrated in Nellore. It is truly followed that wishes which are to be fulfilled in one's life become 100% fulfilled. So the Rottela Panduga is followed by many people all over India. Nellore1 region produced famous Telugu artists ranging from ancient poets like Tikkana and to modern artists like Atreya. Ancient Telugu poets Tikkana, Molla, Marana, Ketana laid foundations for Telugu literature here. Tikkana, the second in Kavitrayam translated Sanskrit epic Mahabharat. Molla, the second Telugu poetess had translated Ramayan into Telugu. Ketana, a disciple of Tikkana, dedicated his work called "Dasakumara Charitram" to Tikkana. Ketana also wrote Andhrabashabushanam, a grammar book for Telugu. Marana, another poet and disciple of Tikkana wrote "Markandeya Puranam". Ramarajabhushanudu from this region was patronized by Krishnadevaraya. Poet Gunturu Seshendra Sarma is also from this region

The main entertainment in the region is movies and related activities. S. P. Balasubrahmanyam, one of the India's top singers, hailed from Nellore. Famous Telugu lyrics writer Acharya Atreya is from this region. Pattabi Rami Reddy, a poet and director from Nellore wrote Ragala Dozen (A Dozen Melodies), a collection that recorded his observations in Madras and Nellore. He also produced a Telugu film, Pellinaati Pramanalu, the national award winner, and directed films Samskara, Chandamarutha, Sringaramasa, and Devara Kaadu.[19] Nellore also is place of many yesteryear Telugu actors like Rajanala and Ramana Reddy and Telugu actress Vanisree, playback singers like S. P. Balasubramanyam, S. P. Sailaja, V. T. Venkataram, a famous consumer activist, hails from Nellore.

Notable people from the district

Flora and fauna


Nellore is rich in flora and fauna. It had a lush coastal belt, moist Eastern Ghats, dry forests and short bushes. The fauna is equally wonderful. Pulicat Lake near Sullurpeta, 75–80 km from Nellore, is a habitat for a variety of aquatic & terrestrial birds like flamingoes, painted storks, grey pelicans and seagulls and much more. There is a sanctuary called Nelapattu Bird Sancturay, on the banks of Pulicat lake, is spread over 486 km2. It boasts the famous Siberian Cranes and nearly 160 species of birds. The annual Flamingo Festival is celebrated at this bird sanctuary at Nelapattu. Nellore district is also known for lakes and beach parks. Kotha Koduru, located 22 km from Nellore has a picturesque beach. Maipadu beach, located 14 km from Nellore, is famous for sand dunes and giant sea waves. Nellore Lake park (Nellore cheruvu, near Podalakur road) provides boating and a restaurant.


  1. ^ "District - Guntur". Andhra Pradesh Online Portal. Retrieved 29 August 2014. 
  2. ^ a b "Nellore district profile". Andhra Pradesh State Portal. 
  3. ^ "The martyr of Telugu statehood". The Hindu (Chennai, India). 2002-11-11. 
  4. ^ Nellore became revenue unit. Retrieved on 2012-06-13.
  5. ^ Law, Gwillim (2011-09-25). "Districts of India". Statoids. Retrieved 2011-10-11. 
  6. ^ Srivastava, Dayawanti et al. (ed.) (2010). "States and Union Territories: Andhra Pradesh: Government". India 2010: A Reference Annual (54th ed.). New Delhi, India: Additional Director General, Publications Division,  
  7. ^ "Island Directory Tables: Islands by Land Area".  
  9. ^ a b c d e f "District Census 2011". 2011. Retrieved 2011-09-30. 
  10. ^ US Directorate of Intelligence. "Country Comparison:Population". Retrieved 2011-10-01. Armenia 2,967,975 July 2011 est. 
  11. ^ "2010 Resident Population Data". U. S. Census Bureau. Retrieved 2011-09-30. Mississippi 2,967,297 
  12. ^ Indian Census data.2011. Retrieved on 2012-06-13.
  13. ^ Andhra Pradesh News : Villages on State border stand neglected. The Hindu (2009-01-09). Retrieved on 2012-06-13.
  14. ^ "Ten new revenue divisions created". The Hindu (Hyderabad). 4 April 2013. Retrieved 31 October 2014. 
  15. ^ "Geographic Information". Nellore District Official Website. Retrieved 22 October 2014. 
  16. ^ "Mandals in Nellore district". AP State Portal. Retrieved 24 May 2014. 
  17. ^ "Krishnapatnam Port Company Ltd". 
  18. ^ "Decks cleared for Dugarajapatnam port". The Times of India. 
  19. ^ Fruits of labour. (2005-02-18). Retrieved on 2012-06-13.

Further reading

  • History of Andhras up to 1565, Durga Prasad, P. G. Publishers, Guntur.
  • Samagra Andhrula Charitram

External links

  • Official website
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