Census India 1931: The Population Problem in Cochin

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This article is an extract from


Report by

J. H. HUTTON, C.I.E., D.Sc., F.A.S.B.,

Corresponding Member of the Anthropologische Gesselschaft of Vienna.

Delhi: Manager of Publications


(Hutton was the Census Commissioner for India)

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The Population Problem in Cochin

Cochin has an area of 1,480 square miles and a population of 1,205,016 persons, (females exceeding males) showing, over that recorded in 1921, an increase of 23.1 per cent., which the Census Superintendent regards as representing a real increase of 19 per cent.

The density is 814 to the square mile, but this is over the whole State, whereas more than a third is mountainous and the area includes the surface of the back waters, long stretches of salt water lagoon cut off from the sea by narrow tongues of land. In the mountainous forests of the Western Ghats the density is very low, as the inhabitants consist only of a few scattered jungle tribes and the forest officials, and if these areas be excluded from the forest taluks, the density of which is 365 to 975 when they are included, the density rises to 1,126, while the density of the coastal taluks excluding the lagoons in a similar manner. becomes 2,733, one village, covering an area of 3.8 sq. miles, having the incredible density of 4,090 persons to the sq. mile, for its inhabitants are not an urban population but a rural and agricultural one, the staple crops being coconut and rice, as in the case with most of the taluks of Cochin State.

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