• Short Summary

    THE LACCADIVE ISLANDS, A GROUP OF 20 CORAL ATOLLS, ARE SITUATED JUST 125 MILES OFF THE WEST COAST OF INDIA.

  • Description

    THE LACCADIVE ISLANDS, A GROUP OF 20 CORAL ATOLLS, ARE SITUATED JUST 125 MILES OFF THE WEST COAST OF INDIA. KNOWN AS THE 'COCONUT ISLANDS', THE LACCADIVES WERE CONSTITUTED INTO THE UNION TERRITORY IN 1956, WITH AN ADMINISTRATOR REPRESENTING THE GOVERNMENT.

    THE CULTIVATION OF COCONUTS IS THE MAIN ACTIVITY IN THE TERRITORY. SOIL AND CLIMATIC CONDITIONS ARE IDEAL AND ALMOST THE ENTIRE AREA HAS BEEN PLANTED WITH COCONUT PALMS. THE TOTAL AREA UNDER COCONUT CULTIVATION IS ABOUT 2600 HECTARES. THERE ARE NO LARGE-SCALE INDUSTRIES AND HOUSEHOLD INDUSTRIES FORM THE BACKBONE OF THE ECONOMY. THE MAJORITY OF THE POPULATION IS ENGAGED IN COIR SPINNING, COPRA PROCESSING AND FOOD PRESERVATION.

    THE AVERAGE AREA OF EACH ISLAND IS LESS THAN A SQUARE MILE, SO INTERNAL TRANSPORT IS ALMOST NON-EXISTENT. THERE ARE NO METALLED ROADS OR VEHICULAR TRAFFIC. SMALL TRACTORS AND HAND-DRAWN TROLLEYS ARE USED TO TRANSPORT GOODS IS SOME ISLANDS. BICYCLES ARE THE MAIN MODE OF CONVEYANCE IN ALL ISLANDS.

    FOR TRAVEL BETWEEN ISLANDS AND THE MAINLAND, SAILING VESSELS ARE USED. THERE ARE MAINLY CARRIERS OF CARGO, WHILE MOTOR VESSELS PROVIDE MOST OF THE PASSENGERS TRANSPORT.

    THE TERRITORY HAS 38 EDUCATIONAL INSTITUTES--ALL RUN BY THE GOVERNMENT. THERE ARE NEARLY 7000 STUDENTS ON THEIR ROLLS AND EDUCATION FREE.

    AT MOST OF THE ISLANDS, PEOPLE SPEAK A LANGUAGE SIMILAR TO MALAYALAM, EXCEPT ON MINICOY, WHERE THE INHABITANTS SPEAKS MAHL -- THE LANGUAGE OF THE MALDIVE GROUP OF ISLANDS WHICH LIE TO THE SOUTH. DRESS IS SIMILAR TO THAT OF THE MUSLIMS OF KERALA.

    POLYGAMY IS WIDELY PRACTISED--BUT A MAN ONLY LIVES WITH ONE WIFE AT A TIME. MARRIAGES TAKE PLACE AT AN EARLY AGE--WHEN A BOY IS ABOUT 16 AND A GIRL 10 TO 12.

    ON HER RECENT VISIT TO THE ISLANDS, INDIAN PRIME MINISTER, MRS. INDIRA GANDHI, URGED THE ISLANDERS TO DEVELOP THEIR STILL-INFANT FISHING INDUSTRY. SHE ADVISED THEM TO ADOPT MODERN TECHNIQUES.

    MRS. GANDHI ALSO HINTED THAT THE ISLANDS MIGHT BE DEVELOPED AS TOURIST CENTRES WITHIN THE NEXT FEW YEARS. SHE AND MANY LEADING GOVERNMENT MEMBERS FEEL THAT PROPERLY DEVELOPED, THE ISLANDS COULD PROVE A SERIOUS TOURIST THREAT TO THEIR COUNTERPARTS IN THE SOUTH PACIFIC.

  • Tags

  • Data

    Film ID:
    VLVA6JYUCEJ8BSJMFB6TJO394KUGM
    Media URN:
    VLVA6JYUCEJ8BSJMFB6TJO394KUGM
    Group:
    Reuters - Source to be Verified
    Archive:
    Reuters
    Issue Date:
    12/12/1969
    Sound:
    Unknown
    HD Format:
    Available on request
    Stock:
    Colour
    Duration:
    00:04:02:00
    Time in/Out:
    /
    Canister:
    N/A

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