(Last Updated on : 22/07/2010)
Machilipatnam is a port city located in the Krishna district of the southern state of India, Andhra Pradesh. It is located in the southeast of Vijaywada at a distance of 70 km. and is the administrative headquarters of the Krishna district. Situated on one of the mouths of the river Krishna at the Bay of Bengal this port city was a trading center for French, British and Dutch in the 17th century. Geographically, the city is located between 16.17° North latitude and 81.13° East longitude at a height of 14 metres (45 feet) above mean sea level.
Formerly Machilipatnam was known as Masulipatnam and was one of the foremost British colonies in India. As a matter of fact, it was the first trading post on the Coromandel Coast of the British East India Company. The town gets its name from the gateway of the Dutch tombs, which are decorated, with the eyes of a fish (Machili). The Dutch tombs also contain carved instructions from 1649 to 1725.
Machilipatnam has a tropical climate with hot summers and moderate winters. April and June are the hottest months. It gets an annual rainfall due to the southwest monsoon. Cyclones frequently visit Machilipatnam due to the low pressure created by the southwest monsoon.
The city has a flourishing economy, and houses one big and several small industries. Bharat Electronics Limited (BEL) a unit of the Union Defence Ministry has a manufacturing unit here. It has a medium fishing harbor that can hold 350 fishing vessels. It also has a carpet weaving industry Agriculture is an important occupation of the people living here and the main crop cultivated here is paddy.
Machilipatnam is famous for its Kalamkari textiles and paintings created using vegetable dye. It is also known for its block printed silk and cotton sarees, upholstery, sling bags and dresses.
According to the Indian Census report published in 2001 Machilipatnam had a population of 183, 370. Males and females account for an equal proportion of the population. In Machilipatnam, 10% of the population is less than six years of age. The average literacy rate of Machilipatnam is 69%, which is higher than the national average literacy rate, which is 59.5%. To be specific, the male literacy rate is 73% and the female literacy rate is 65%.
The Manginapudi Beach, located at a distance of 10 km. is well known for its scenic beauty. The Panduranga Swamy Temple at Chilakalapudi close to the beach is a popular pilgrimage destination.