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Kottayam  :

Kottayam ( koʊttɑːjəm ) (കോട്ടയം, Malayalam) is a city in the Indian state of Kerala, covering an area of 55.40 square kilometres (21.39 sq mi). It is the administrative capital of the district of Kottayam and is located in south-central Kerala with a population of 357,533 according to the 2011 census.

The city is an important trading centre for spices and commercial crops, especially rubber. Major Kerala print media such as Malayala Manorama, Deepika and Mangalam are headquartered in the town. Also a pioneering center of modern education in Kerala, Kottayam became India's first city to achieve 100% literacy in 1989[2] while the district became the first tobacco free district in India on September 28, 2008.[3] The city is also widely known as Akshara Nagari (അക്ഷര നഗരി) (City of Alphabets) in honour of its contributions to print media and literature.[4] It is known as the "Land of Letters, Lakes and Latex" on account of the upsurge in literacy, the presence of a vast network of rivers and canals, which empty into the great expanse of Vembanad and the sizable volume of natural rubber produced here. Kottayam is also famous for it's mural paintings in various temples , churches and other religious and cultural centres. So the city is also known as 'The mural city of Kerala'.

Apart from being the educational hub of Kerala, Kottayam is also home to central and state government organisations including Mahatma Gandhi University, Rubber Board and India's Rubber research Institute along with the Government Medical College, Kottayam. MRF Limited, the leading tyre manufacturer in India has its original roots in the city and has a hi-tech manufacturing facility located at Vadavathoor, Kottayam. D.C. Books, the largest publisher and a leading bookseller in Kerala, is headquartered in Kottayam.

The Headquarters of the Malankara Orthodox Syrian Church is the Catholicate Palace located at Devalokam, Kottayam. It is the official headquarters of the Catholicos Of The East who reigns on the Supreme Throne of St.Thomas the Apostle.

Kottayam district acquired its name from the town of Kottayam, which is the headquarters of the district. It is believed that the name Kottayam is derived from a combination of the Malayalam words kott (fort) and akammm (inside), which can be translated as "the interior of the fort".
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