Palakkad is a part of the erstwhile Malabar district of Madras Presidency. The district accounts for about 11.5% of the total land area of the state of Kerala, with the share of population is 8.22.%. The literacy rate of the district is low than the state. The district has got two types of climates. Ottappalam, Alathur and Mannarkkad are having a climate similar to that of other districts of Kerala, whereas Palakkad and Chittur are having rather a dry climate similar to Tamilnadu. However the average rainfall is good for cultivation. There are five Taluks and 163 villages in the district. There are four Municipal towns and Ninety one Panchayaths in the district. The district is divided into 13 Community Development Blocks for the effective implementation of various developmental activities. Palakkad or Palghat is the land of Palmyrahs and Paddy fields. Along with Kuttanadu, Palakkad is a major Paddy growing area of the state. It is often called as the “Gateway of Kerala”. The Sahya Ranges bordering the region and the 32 Kim. long gap in the mountains esert a dominant influence on the climate of the region. This Gap is known as “Palakkad Gap”. In the past, this land was known as Palakkattussery Etymologist trace the word Palakkadu from Palanilam meaning the dry area. Palakkad has a long history dating back to the Paleolithic Period, which was substantiated by a number of megalithic retics discovered from this region. It also housed the Capitals of two Kingdoms such as Palakkad and Kollengode, which were in prominence till a Century back.
The ancient history of Palakkad is shrouded. According to William Logan, the author of “Malabar Manual”, the Pallava Dynasty of Kanchi might have invaded Malabar in the second or third century. One of their headquarters was Palakkad, which could be the present Palakkad. For many centuries the Malabar Region ruled
by Perumals. Malabar had been invaded by many of the ancient South Indian Rulers. After this the Malabar was divided among their Utayavars. The famous among them were the “Valluvakonathiri” (Ruler of Valluvanad) Kollengode Raja (Ruler of Venguvanad) and Sekharivarma (Raja of Palakkad) of Palakkattussery. The
Palakkad Region was came under the control of Kollengode Raja and Sekharivarma Raja of Palakkad. When the Kozhikode Sammoothiri invaded Palakkad in 1757, the Palakkad Raja sought the help of Hyder Ali of Mysore. His help forced the Sammoothiri for retreat. Later Hyder Ali subjugated all territories in Palakkad, which were under the possession of Kozhikkode Sammoothiri. Thus whole dominion of Palakkad passed into the control of Mysore Sulthan Hyder Ali Khan and his son Tippu Sulthan. The war between East India Company and Tippu Sulthan ended with the treaty of 1792 and all the possessions of Tippu in Malabar area
ceded to the East India Company and it formed the Malabar District of the Madras Presidency.
Palakkad district is situated in the South West Coast of India. The district is bounded on the North by Malappuram District, in the East by Coimbatore district of Tamilnadu, in the south by Trichur district and in the west by Trichur and Malappuram districts. The district is between 10’ 21 and 11’ 14 North latitude and 76’ 02 and 76’ 54 East longitude. The total Geographical Area of Palakkad district is 4480 sq.k.ms. Representing 11.53% of the State’s Geographical area. The Forestland of the district covers an area of 136257 hectares.