Thursday, September 8, 2011

Origins of Mukkulathors...

There are diverse theories with regard to the origin of Mukkulathors.
Dr Spencer Wells and Dr. Pitchappan have found an ancient DNA marker in the blood of Kallar that links them to the very first modern humans who migrated out of Africa about 60,000 years ago and travelling through the southern coastline of Asia had eventually reached Australia. Based on this theory, it is assumed that the Piramala Kallars are the oldest human inhabitants of the subcontinent. Yet, this is an isolated case found only among the individuals of the Kallar caste

The Nayak Period and the Polygars
The downfall of the Mukkulathors occurred in 1345 with the fall of Vira Pandyan IV and the subsequent conquest of Madurai by the Delhi Sultanate. However, the southern territories of the Sultanate soon asserted their independence and the Mukkulathors recovered under the Vijayanagar Empire and later under the Nayak dynasty during whose period they served as Polygars or chieftains. The Nayaks were actually governors appointed by Vijayanagar kings and were Naidus of Telugu origin. Later, after the fall of Vijayanagar, they established some measure of independence in the provinces which they governed and appointed individuals from the warrior Mukkulathor clans as their military chieftains and governors. After a century of peace and prosperity, the Nayak kingdom disintegrated and regional Polygar chieftains most of whom were from the Mukkulathor communities, making use of this opportunity, established their dominance and rule in the areas which they governed. However, just as their sun was in its ascendancy there arose a serious obstacle in the form of the British East India Company who desired to force the Polygars into submission and annex their territories to the Madras Presidency.
Freedom Fighters and the Polygar Wars
There was a clash of interests between Mukkulathor Polygar chieftains seeking to recover their lands after 400 years of foreign rule and the British East India Company, an emerging power seeking to expand its influence and power into new territories and to arrest the growth of French influence in India ahead of the Seven Years War.
The first direct challenge was thrown by Puli Thevan in 1755. This was precipitated by the support the British East India Company lent to Puli Thevar's enemy, the Nawab of Arcot. Puli Thevar is remembered as the first king to have fought and defeated the British in India. His exploits have since become legendary.
Resistance to British rule was also offered by Padal Vellaiya Devan who fought the British along with Kattabomman. His son Desakaval Senbaga Devar is also remembered for his exploits.
Queen Velu Nachiyar, Queen of Sivaganga, is another noted personality who fought with the British during early British Era.
The Maruthu Pandiyar brothers are notable for their role in the Polygar Wars. They were eventually captured by the British and hanged in 1801.
The surnames used by the Thevar people are Ambalakarar, Servai, Vandaiyar, Mannaiyar, Nattar (not Nadar), etc. It is a general practice in Tamil Nadu to address a Thevar woman as "Nachchiyaar". The Kallars of Dindigul, Trichy, Thanjavur, Theni, Madurai, Sivaganga, Pudukottai and Ramnad Districts have very distinct surnames. Some of the most common names are Anjathevar, Vanathirayar, Sendapiriyar, OOnayaar, Alathondamar, Ambalam, Aarsuthiyar,Kaadavaraayar, Kalingarayar, Vandaiyaar, Vallundar,Thanjaraayar, Chozhangaraayar, Kandiyar, Pursaar, Vaanavaraayar, Mazhavaraayar, Payer, Kommatti, Mootar, Patti, Kannakkarar, Irungular, Singilaar, Pallavaraayar,Ponnapoondar,Pullavaraayar, Servai, Karaimeendar,Vanavarayar,Vairayar,Ponpethiar,Gopalar, Thondaimaan, Thevar, Kandapillai, Vayaadiyar, Vanniar, Nattaar, Alankara Priyar, Munaiyatriyar,Keerudayar, Saaluvar, Manraayar,Kaadavaraayar, Madhavarayar, Onthiriyar, Servai, Serumadar, Vambaliar, Thenkondaar, Mankondaar, Kaaduvetiyaar, Sozhagar, Chozanga Nattar,olivarayar etc. There are over 700 surnames in use.
In 18 th century Vallambars (Nattars) helped the Maruthu brothers in War against Britishers. So they presents some areas to them, to manage the administration of places near to Karaikkudi. Then Vallambars are also called as Palaya Nattars
Current Status
Although a great many of the members are still agriculturalists, many have also progressed up the social ladder as doctors, engineers, entrepreneurs, politicians and civil servants. Large number of people from the community are serving the nation as military men. Large number of people serving the tamilnadu police department

The code of suicide by warriors or maravars in ancient tamilnadu
Avippali, Thannai, Verttal, Vallan pakkam, Pun Kilithu Mudiyum Maram and Marakkanchi: the forms of martial suicide and suicidal battle of the warrior as the ultimate expression of his loyalty to his commander. These six forms of martial suicide are defined as described by the works referred to above.
Pulla Vazhkai Vallan Pakkam – the martial attitude of the warrior who goes forth into suicidal battle is mentioned by Tholkappiyam. The other works refer to it as Thannai Verttal. Duarte Barbosa describes the practice among the Nayar(of the Chera kingdom). It was later noticed by British officials as well. It was also prevalent among the Maravar (of the Pandya kingdom) from whom the suicidal Aapathhuthavi bodyguard was selected. Thannai Verttal also refers to the suicide of a warrior on hearing that his king or commander has died (Purapporul Venpa Malai). Punkilithu Mudiyum Maram is the martial act of a warrior who commits suicide by tearing apart his battle wound.
Another form of martial suicide mentioned by all the works except Veera soliyam, is Avippali. Tamil inscriptions speak of it as Navakandam. Inscriptions found in many parts of Tamilnadu provide greater information on the practice. Navakandam is the act of a warrior who slices his own neck to fulfil the vow made to korravai – the Tamil goddess of war – for his commanders’ victory in battle. The Kalingathu Parani(10) – a work which celebrates the victory of the Chola king Kulotunga and his general Thondaman in the battle for Kalinga, describes the practice in detail. “The temple of korravai is decorated with lotus flowers which bloomed when the warriors sliced their own necks”(106); “they slice the base of their necks; the severed heads are given to the goddess”(111); “when the neck is sliced and the head is severed, the headless body jumps with joy for having fulfilled the vow”(113).
The epics of Chilapadikaram (5: 79-86) and Manimekalai (6: 50-51) mention the practice. To ensure the complete severing of the head, the warrior tied his hair to a bamboo bent taut before he cut his neck. Hero stones depicting this practice are found all over Tamil Nadu, and are called Saavan Kallu by locals. The warriors who thus committed suicide were not only deified in hero stones (saavan kallu) and worshipped but their relatives were given lands which were exempted from tax(11).
An area handbook (Tharamangalam) of the Tamilnadu archeology department notes that “the Nava Kandam sculpture which is found widely all over Kongu Nadu (Coimbatore, Salem) is to be seen at the Tharamangalam Kailasanathar kovil also. The people call it Saavan Kallu. “The practice of Nava Kandam existed in Kongu Nadu till the early part of this [i.e., 20th] century.”(12)
A Saavan Kallu at Thenkarai Moolanatha sami Kovil in Madurai, depicting the act of a warrior holding his hair with his left hand and slicing his neck with his right – 14th century – is said to be annually worshipped by the Conjeevaram Mudaliyars.(13) The Conjeevaram Mudaliyars are Kaikolar, a presentday weaving caste which was militarized under the Chola empire and was made into a special military body; there are indications that Kaikolar warriors practiced Nava Kandam(14).
Apart from these codified forms of martial suicide, a method called Vadakkiruththal is mentioned in Tamil heroic poetry. It is the act of a warrior king fasting to death, if some dire dishonour were to come upon him(15). The Tamil teacher, and the Dravidian propagandist, turned the song of the legendary Chera king Irumborai who committed suicide when he was taken captive by his enemies into a compelling theme in Tamil renaissance.
The Avippali form of martial suicide as the ultimate expression of loyalty to one’s commander, is deeply embedded in the Tamil psyche. Senchorru-kadan (the debt of red rice) is a phrase that is widely used today by Tamils as an expression of loyalty. One frequently hears of it in a popular Tamil song. The phrase sands for the ritual of partaking of rice by which Maravar and other Tamil military caste warriors bound themselves to their king or commander to die in suicidal battle for him, or to commit suicide on the day he was slain. Of Avippali, the Puraporul Venba Malai ([verse] 92) says, “thinking of nothing but the red (blood) rice the Maravar give their life as offering in battle.”
The ritual of red or blood rice was described by two Muslim travellers who had visited the Tamil country in the 9th century. “A quantity of cooked rice was spread before the king, and some three or four hundred persons came of their own accord and received each a small quantity of rice from the king’s own hands, after he himself had eaten some. By eating of this rice, they all engage themselvesto burn themselves on the day the king dies or is slain; and they punctually fulfill their promise.”(16) In modern times it has been observed that “when a Maravar takes food in the house of a stranger, he will take a pinch of earth and put it on the food before he commences his meal.”(17) This act freed him from the debt of blood rice.[2]Some also committed suicide by eating bricks.
Other version
Kallar, Maravar, Agamudaiyar basically are the Pandiya and chola caste who ruled the pandiya nadu and chola nadu.
Kallar mainly lived and are still populas on the northern pandian territory or Thanjavur, Thiruchirappalli, Dindugal, Madurai districts.
Agamudaiyar formed the police force and did security jobs. They bascially stood guard for Temple, Farm lands, Nadan hamlets. They are called servai in Thirunalveli, Thoothukudi districts. Maruthu Sagothararkal are marked for their guard of Kalayar koil against the war with British. They are scaterd all thro Pandiyan Territory mainly to all temple cities.
"In Madurai - West Masi Street,their community people formed a AGAMUDAIYAR ARAN(Maruthu pandiyar mandram)"
Maravar are brave warriors who met head-on. They lived and are still populas on the northern Pandian Territory next to Kallar belt in the districts of Ramnad, Madurai, Raja Palayam, Thirunelveli. They shared the ruling titles of Pandiyans for their bravery. Raja of Ramnad is the fact for this.
When the pandian suffered defeat at the hands of Nayaks and Muslims of Vijayanagar Empire, These 3 castes stood guard and gave their life in protecting the assets of Madurai Meenakshi temple and its chain of temples down south. They retained the pandian control and still are dominant in the southern pandiyan districts of Tamilnadu

Thursday, June 30, 2011


திருநெல்வேலி மாவட்டம் திருநெல்வேலி நகரை தலைமையகமாக கொண்டு இயங்குகிறது. இந்தியாவின் பழமையான நகரங்களில் இதுவும் ஒன்றாகும். 3000 ஆண்டு பழமையான இந்த நகரம் தாமிரபரணி ஆற்றின் கரையில் அமைந்துள்ளது.

திருநெல்வேலி பழமையான நகரம் என்பதற்கு அரிச்சநல்லூர் பகுதியில் தொல்பொருள் ஆராய்ச்சியாளர்கள் கண்டுபிடித்த முதுமக்கள் தாழி சிறந்த சான்றாகும். இந்த தாழியில் சில எலும்பு கூடுகளுடன் பழந்தமிழ் எழுத்துக்களும், உமி, அரிசி ஆகியவையும் இருந்தன.

இவற்றை ஆராய்ந்த தொல்பொருள் ஆராய்ச்சியாளர்கள் 2800 ஆண்டு பழமையானது என உறுதியளித்தனர். இதன் மூலம் புதிய கற்காலத்தில் இருந்து 3000 ஆண்டுகளுக்கு முன்னரே திருநெல்வேலியில் மக்கள் வாழ்ந்துள்ளனர் என்பது தெரிய வந்தது. மேலும் ஆராய்வதற்காக அரிச்சநல்லூர் தற்போது தொல்பொருள் ஆராய்ச்சி மையத்தின் கட்டுப்பாட்டில் உள்ளது.பாண்டியர்கள் காலத்தில் திருநெல்வேலி தென்பகுதியின் தலைநகரமாக விளங்கியது. ஆற்காடு நவாப் மற்றும் நாயக்கர்கள் காலத்தில் இது முக்கிய வர்த்தக நகரமாக இருந்தது. அவர்கள் திருநெல்வேலியை நெல்லை சீமை என்று அழைத்தனர்.

பாண்டியர்கள் ஆட்சிக்கு பின் கி.பி. 900 முதல் 1200 வரைசோழ பேரரசின் முக்கிய நகரமாக திருநெல்வேலி இருந்தது. பின்னர் விஜயநகர பேரரசின் கட்டுப்பாட்டிலும், நாயக்கர்கள், நவாப்கள் கட்டுப்பாட்டிலும் இருந்தது. 1781ம் ஆண்டு ஆற்காடு நவாப்கள் உள்ளூர் நிர்வாகத்தை ஆங்கிலேயர்களிடம் ஒப்படைத்தனர். 1801ம் ஆண்டு திருநெல்வேலியை ஆங்கிலேயர்கள் முழுமையாக கைப்பற்றினர். அதன் பின்னர் இந்தியா சுதந்திரம் அடையும் வரை ஆங்கிலேயர்கள் இங்கு ஆட்சி புரிந்தனர்.

ஆங்கிலேயர்களுக்கு திருநெல்வேலி என்பது உச்சரிக்க சிரமமாக இருந்ததால் ஆற்காடு நவாப்கள் 1801ம் ஆண்டு தின்னவேலி என பெயரிட்டனர். ஆங்கிலேயர்களின் கிழக்கிந்திய கம்பெனியின் நிர்வாகத்தில் திருநெல்வேலி ராணுவ தலைமையகமாக இருந்தது. இதன் மூலம் பாளையக்காரர்களை ஆங்கிலேயர்கள் ஒடுக்கினர். இதன் பின்னர் திருநெல்வேலி மற்றும் பாளையங்கோட்டை இரண்டும், இரட்டை நகரங்களாக வளர துவங்கியது.

திருநெல்வேலி அல்வா நகரம் என்றும் அழைக்கப்பட்டது. திருநெல்வேலி அல்வாவை பற்றி தெரியாதவர்களே இருக்க முடியாது. அடுத்து, சுவாமி நெல்லையப்பர் காந்திமதி கோயில் பிரசித்தி பெற்றதாகும். திருநெல்வேலி, திருநெல்வேலி டவுன், பாளையங்கோட்டை, மேலப்பாளையம் என்று மூன்று நிர்வாக மையங்களாக செயல்பட்டு வருகிறது.

திருநெல்வேலி மாவட்டம் மக்கள் தொகை, வருவாய் ஆகியவற்றை கொண்டு 1999ம் ஆண்டு மாநகராட்சியாக அறிவிக்கப்பட்டது. திருநெல்வேலி பிறநகரங்களுடன் சாலைகளால் இணைக்கப்பட்டுள்ளது. மதுரை, கன்னியாகுமரி, கொல்லம், கேரளாவுடன் தேசிய நெடுஞ்சாலைகள் மூலம் இணைக்கப்பட்டுள்ளது.

சுதந்திர போராட்ட வீரர்களான வீரபாண்டிய கட்டபொம்மன், வ.உ.சிதம்பரம் பிள்ளை, பாரதியார் (தூத்துக்குடி) போன்றவர்கள் திருநெல்வேலியை சேர்ந்தவர்களாவர். 1990ம் ஆண்டிற்கு முன் தூத்துக்குடி, திருநெல்வேலி மாவட்டத்திற்குள் இருந்தது.

Monday, March 8, 2010



Kallar (Tamil: கள்ளர்) (meaning "Veerar"), is one of the three castes which constitute the Mukkalathor confederacy. "a fearless community show many signs of independence and non-submission to any form of subjugation". Kallars are found largely in Thanjavur, Trichy, Pudukkottai, Madurai, Dindigul, Sivagangai, Karur, kanchipuram, Theni and Ramanathapuram districts of Tamil Nadu.

Mukkulathor (Thevar)

Mukkulathor Means Three clans (Kallar, Maravar and Agamudayar) Combinedly called as Thevar (Estimated population 1,30,00,000).
Kallar, Maravar and Agamudayar are siblings and the Descendents of the Three clans chera, chola and Pandian. Thevar (Derived from Sanskrit Devar) means God early days Kings were portrayed as god and called as Thevar. Later the descendents of Muvenders were called as thevars.


In Tamilnadu Kallars are called by various Surnames, these names comes to them during various times by the place they have ruled, the place they won in battle or to state their bravery.
There are over 1000 surnames in use. There are no other Castes in Tamilnadu have this many Surnames. Some of the commonly used Surnames are.
Paluvettaraiyar, Malayaman, Adigaman,Mannaiyar, Rajaliyar, Vallavaraiyar, Thanjaraayar, Pallavaraayar, Vandaiyar, Thondaiman, Etrandaar, Vaanavaraayar, Servai, Amballakkarar, Thevar, Sethurayar, Soma Naicker, Muniyarayar(Munaiyatriyar), Thondamar, Mayrkondar, Kallathil Venrar, , Nattar (not Nadar), Cholagar, kumarandar, Anjathevar, Olivarayar, Sendapiriyar, Alathondamar, Ambalam, Aarsuthiyar, Kaadavaraayar, Kalingarayar, Vandaiyaar, Veeramundar, Sepillaiyar, Vallundar, Chozhangaraayar, Kandiyar, Mazhavaraayar, Kommatti Mootar, Kannakkarar, Irungular, Singilaar, Ponnapoondar, Pullavaraayar, Araimeendar, Vairayar, Ponpethiar, Gopalar, Kandapillai, Vayaadiyar, Vanniar, Vallambar, Alankara Priyar, mavaliyar, Keerudayar, Saaluvar, Manraayar, Madhavarayar, Onthiriyar, Serumadar, Vambaliar, Thenkondaar, Mankondaar, etc.

It is a general practice in Tamil Nadu to address a Thevar woman as "Nachchiyaar"

During sangam

The kings (Araiyars), were ruling Thondai Nadu, There are Hundreds of records pertaining to this dynasty. Thondai in Tamil means Kilay or pirivu, Pallava in Sanskrit defines the same, so Pallavas or Thondaiman are considered as a offshoot of Cholas later become an Prominent rulers.

The kings (Araiyars) ruled Tirukkoyilur during Chola kingdom with the title Malayaman (which is one of the family name of Kallar community). They were in close relation with Cholas. Sangam literature mentions of Tirumudikari, a Malayaman chief who fought alongside Perunarkilli Chola to defeat Cheral Irumporai (Irumporai Cheras). Vastly, Cholas, Cheras and even Satavahanas controlled the destiny in times.

The kings were ruling Tagadur, present villupuram district, One of The Four kingdoms Mentioned in rock-edict of Ashoka. Adigaman Naduman Anji King of Tagadur is Mentioned in rock-edict of Ashoka as Satyaputra Inscriptions found from Villuppuram Proves that stating Adigaman(which is one of the family name of Kallar community). as Satyaputra Adhiyan Neduman Anji intha Pali.


The Chola Dynasty (Tamil:சோழர் குலம்) was a Tamil dynasty that ruled primarily in southern India until the 13th century the other two royal dynastys were Pandian and Chera. The meaning of chola Is unknown. Chera, chola and pandian are considered as Siblings.
The dynasty originated in the fertile valley of the Kaveri River. Karikala Chola was the most famous among the early Chola kings, while Aditya I, Parantaka I, Rajaraja Chola I, Rajendra Chola I, Rajadhiraja Chola, Virarajendra Chola, Kulothunga Chola and Kulothunga Chola III were notable emperors of the medieval Cholas.
Chera, chola and pandian are commonly called as Thevar to mean they are desendents of Lord Indra. But specially cholas were called by many Surnames all these surnames (Mel kondar, Chozangar, Thevar etc.) are now used by Kallars only shows that Cholas are from the Royal Kallar community. The Bramanda puranas Puvindra puranam and Kalla Kesari Purannam also Mentions the same.
Many Archaeologists and Historians Also proves that Cholas are Kallar.
Lots of mariages takes place between cholas with malavarayar, malayaman, Paluvettaraiyar, Melkondar and Vallavaraiyar. they also belongs to Kallar community.


The Pallava kingdom (Tamil: பல்லவர்) was an ancient South Indian tamil kingdom. The word Pallava means branch in Sanskrit. The word is rendered as Tondaiyar in Tamil language. The Pallava kings at several places are called Thondamans or Thondaiyarkon. The sancrit meaning of pallava is Kilay The tamil Thondai means the same, it proves that pallavas are desendents (Kilay or Pirivu) of chola.
Pathupattu, one of the sangam literatures, reads that the king Thondaiman Ilandirayan ruled this town around 2500 years ago. The pallavas are told as the descendents of Thondaiman Ilandirayan.
They were also called by surnames like sethurayar pallavarayar,vandarayar,kadurayar,Vallav… etc. all these surnames are used by Kallrs only. Proves that Pallavar are Decendents of Chola (Kallar).
Agamudayar meaning Landlords . Agamudayars are famously known by their title ServaiThey make expert soldiers, warriors and constituted the bulk of Pandya armies. The legendary [[Maruthu Pandiyar]] brothers came from the Agamudayar (Servai) community. The lands the community owns are actually rewarded for their loyal and valuable service rendered for the cause of the Kings and the nation.
Agamudaiyars are found all over in Southern Tamilnadu in Sivagangai, Virudhunagar, Ramanathapuram, Tirunelveli, Thoothukudi, Kanyakumari, Thanjavur, Thiruvarur, Pudukkottai, Madurai, Trichy, Ariyalur and Tiruvannamalai districts & Also in Karnataka state Hiriyur Taluk, Aranakatte & Maskal matti people are living.
The word Agamudaiyan or Ahamudaiyan is derived from the root Aham which in Tamil means the guts or brave of one's mind.Agam also means "land" in Tamil, signifying that Agamudaiyars are Landlords and Householder ; the suffix Udeiyar indicating ownership. The word is also used in another form, Ahampadiyar, derived from another meaning of the same root, i.e., inside. And, in this derivation, it signifies a meaning of a particular profession, whose office it was to attend to the business in the Interior's of the King's Palace or in the Pagoda". The name," Mr. J. H. Nelson writes, "is said by the Rev. G. U. Pope, in his edition of the Abbe Dubois' work to be derived from aham, a temple, and padi, a step, and to have been given to them in consequence of their serving about the steps of temples. But, independently of the fact that Madura pagodas are not approached by flights of steps, this seems to be a very far-fetched and improbable derivation of the word. Or, perhaps, the name comes from aham in the sense of earth, and pati, master or possessor. Agamudaiyar were employed by Srilankan kings as body guards & to protect palaces,according to Ceylon history, they were referred to as "Agampadi Soldiers"& it also gives the break down of the term "Agampadi",(Agampu+Adi-to hit in Tamil), The ordinary title of the Agamudaiyans is Servaikkaran, In Pudukkottai, Trichy, Sivangagai, Virudhunagar, Ramanathapuram, Thanjavur, Thirunelveli, Thoothukudi, Kanyakumari districts Agamudaiyans are also called Terkittiyar ("Southerners")..
The Agamudaiyans are divided into the following sub-sects: Aivali Nattan, Kottaipattu, Malainadu, Nattumangalam, Rajaboja, Rajakulam (Rajakulam and Parvatha Rajakulam), Rajavasal, Kalian, Sani, Maravan, and Servaikkaran. They are the youngest of the three clans and were recognised as a caste only after the 10th century.
Maravar also "Maravan" (meaning "Grateful Warrior") are one of the oldest social groups to be mentioned by the Sangam Tamil literature. This indicates an association with the Tamil land which is at least 2,000 years old. The writers of the Sangam Age place them in rural settlements withdrawn from cities. Maravars are the courageous breed and were involved in the major wars that Tamilnadu witnessed. The Kingdom of Ramnad was a Maravar kingdom and was ruled by the Setupati kings. Ramanathapuram and Sivagangai districts are Maravar strongholds from ancient times.
Maravars are courageous breed and were involved in almost all the major battles and wars that ancient Tamilnadu witnessed. Maravars are found predominantly in the Southern districts of Tamilnadu viz., Madurai, Theni, Sivagangai, Ramanathapuram, Dindigul, Virudhunagar, Thirunelveli, Thoothukudi and Kanyakumari districts of Tamil Nadu. They ruled the vast land mass of Tamilnadu along with the coastal rulers,Paravars. Both these tribes seems to have common origin,tamil nagas. The Southern martial arts of Kalarippayattu, Silambam, Varma Kalai have been practiced primarily by Nairs, Kallars, Thevars and Villavars(Nadans & Ezhavars) of erstwhile Travancore areas.
The Maravar have close relation with Kalabhars even though they Maravars are a non-aryan, non-Kalabhar group.Another aristocratic caste called Paravars are akin to Maravars. They were ancient rulers of Pandya kingdom of coastal land and inland from the First Sangam Tamil age. Their leaders were given the title "Meenavan" and "Pandyan" respectively. Edgar Thurston (1855-1935) a British museologist and ethnographer identified the use of the boomerang by Kallars and Maravars of South India.
Large number of Maravars served in the armies of many princely states of Kerala. But during the 18th and 19th centuries, most of them were assimilated in to the Tamil Padam Nair subcaste of the Nair community. The Maravar regiment of the Travancore army was known as "Maravar Padai", which supplemented Nair Pattalam, the larger indigenous military unit Tamil Padam Nair is recognized as a part of the Malayala Kshatriya social grouping. The Ramnad Zamindar's are accorded the title Sethupathi (protector of the Sethu bridge) even to this day.
There are 2 major subdivisions among the Maravar community. One is Appa Nattu Kondyankottai Maravar and another one is Chembiya Nattu Maravar. The Kondyan Kottai Maravars are related to the Vellalars and are still maintaining Killai(branches) as their sub sects. The Killai is inherited from mother. So a boy or girl will not marry in their same Killai. It is assumed that they are brother & sister. Such a practice is no longer prevailing amongst other maravars. The married womens of kondyankottai maravers wear "Thali" (Thirumangalyam) in the shape of Shiva lingam. So it is called "Linga Thali". Most of the Tamil castes wear the same type of "Linga Thali".
The Chembiya Nattu Maravars are Surya vamsam. They are historically from Thanjavur. Kondayan kottai maravars women were having habits of maruthalli. But Chembiya Nattu Maravars women were having habit of Udankattai yeruthal (Sati which is now banned and hence not in practise).
Kallar Meaning Brave Peoples Kallars are one of the three related castes which constitute the Mukkulathor confederacy. They are described as "A fearless community shows many signs of independence and non-submission to any form of subjugation".
Historians postulate the word Kallar Derived from Kalla means Black in Sanscrit and Tamil Historians postulate Dravidians were called by Aryans as Kalla.
Thirumal is also stated Mal to meant he is Black and also Krishna means Black. In olden days Black Dravidians were stated as Kalla to state their Bravery.
Kallars are largely found in the Southern districts of Thanjavur, Madurai, Pudukkottai, Trichy, Ariyalur, Theni, Dindigul, Sivaganga,Virudhunagar, Tirunelveli, Thiruvarur, Nagapattinam and Ramanathapuram districts of Tamil Nadu. They are also present in Karur, Kanchipuram, Perambalur and Villupuram districts. One of their popular deities is Kallazhagar who is a warrior incarnation of "Lord Thirumala or Venkadavan".
The "Pandi Temples" (Muni Koil) found in Madurai and Southern regions of Tamilnadu were originally the Tombs of the Early Tamil Pandya Kings and Rulers. Pandiyar Kudavarai which is found in Aritapatti (near Melur) has been built for the Siddhars by the Early Pandya Kings.
The Kallars are quintessentially a feudal society, with feudal classes such as the Ambalakarar. They are found mainly in the Madurai, Tirchuripalli, Ariyalur and Sivaganga districts. In these districts, each village is headed by an "Ambalam" (president of an assembly) and the Ambalam took upon themselves the power to adjudicate disputes that arose among the inhabitants in the Nadu. The term "Nadu" is an ancient political and administrative system found wherever Kallar populations migrated.
Thenpandi Singam by M. Karunanidhi is a book about Ambalakarars and it was also made into a Television serial broadcasted over Sun TV Network and music composed by Ilaiyaraaja. They used to hear complaints, hold inquiries and punish the offenders. They wielded considerable powers to intervene in any kind of transaction or transfer of property among the people. No land could be alienated from one man to another without the permission of the Ambalams. The sur-name "Ambalam"is given to them, because of their Administration in their Villages. So they are mostly called as "Ambalam".
Another important Kallar subcaste is the Piramalai Kallar. They are a highly traditional people and have preserved their ancient customs to the present day. They are also believed to be the oldest inhabitants of the Tamil country with reports of their presence going back to Tamil literary works of the 4th century B.C. They are found mainly in the districts of Madurai(Usilampatti), Dindigul and Theni. Their popular deity is Amman, the Mother Goddess. They have contributed enormously in the freedom struggle for India. Perungaamanallur people near Usilampatti, fought against the british and many have died and they have a Thiyagigal Thoon (Pillar of freedom fighters) built in memory of them. Piramalai Kallars have also made big contribution in Nethaji's INA force when Subash chandra bose made a call for the INA force from the submarine radio lots of people from the community went and joint to fight against the british for India. They are kept alive of our ancient culture.
Some of the other feudal classes include Koothappar Kallars, Periyasuriyur Kallars, Gandarvakoatai Kallars and Esanattu Kallars found largely dominated in the Thanjavur, Pudukkottai, Sivagangai & Trichy Districts.

Significant Kallar population also found in Srilanka and Malaysia. Samy Vellu, Ex-Works Minister (lost in 2008 election) and Leader of Malaysian Indian Congress, S. Thondaman, Leader of Indian Tamils of Sri Lanka are notable persons outside Tamilnadu.