Thiruvannamalai District is one of the Industrially backward district in Tamil Nadu.  This district is an outcome of the bifurcation of the North Arcot District and came into existence on 30th September 1989.  The district lies between 12.00 and  12 49’ of North latitude and 78.38 to 79.45 East longitude.  The district is bounded on North and West by Vellore District and the Southwest by Dharmapuri District, on the south by Villupuram District and on the East by Kancheepuram District.

The total geographical area of the district is 6355.61 Thiruvannamalai is the district Headquarters.  It has 7 taluks, 2 revenue divisions, 4 municipal towns and 18 panchayat unions / blocks covering 875 panchayat villages with 1067 revenue villages.


Total Geographical Area 6355.61 Sq.Km.

Revenue Division





The district is endowed with a semi arid tropical climate with an average rainfall of 1240.7 mm. The predominant soil type is red.  Different types of soils like ferrogeneous loamy and sandy loamy are also found extensively in the district.


As per 1991 census, the total population of the district is 20.42 lakhs accounting for 3.7% of the State’s population.  The density of population of the district is 321 people per as against the State’s 429 people per Rural population is predominant with the level of urbanization being just 11.89%.  The rural population constitutes 88.1% of the total population.  This is relatively higher as compared with State average level of 65%.  The female literacy rate is 36.74%.  All the indicators reflect the backwardness of the district.  The basic problem confronting this district is the existence of vicious circle of poverty and backwardness.

Demographic Profile of Thiruvannamalai district:



Population in Millions


Population density ( per  Sq. Km)


Decennial Population Growth (%)


Males as a % of population


Level of Urbanization (%)


Work Participation Rates (%)


Literacy rate (%)


Female literacy rate


            A glance at the size of the work force reveals the relative importance of the different sectors.  The total workforce of the district is 8.824 lakhs accounting for 43% of the total population of the district, of which agriculture and marginal labours alone constitute 20% of the total population.  84.49% of the labours depend directly on agriculture.  Incidentally only 8.59% of the working population is involved directly in the industrial sector.  There are nearly 3.14 lakhs farmers, covering 1.071 lakh ha, holding less than I Acre of land in this district/  The backwardness of the district is apparent from the size of the land holding.  A similar situation is also reflected in the occupational pattern of the working population.

Economic Profiles:


Agriculture is the main stay of the economy.  The main agricultural produce are paddy, groundnut, banana and sugarcane.  The total cropped area is 3.49 lakh Acres, constituting 5.4% of the State’s total.  The cropping intensity is 1.37.  Cultivable area is 55.38% and per capita food grain production is estimated at 200 Kg.

Dairy farming is an important source of subsidiary income to small and marginal farmers.  Poultry is also an important occupation.  The district is suitable for promotion of floriculture.  Chengam, Arni, Polur, Thandarampet, Cheyyar blocks are potential blocks to promote horticulture and floriculture activities.


With such a high work force in agriculture and low work force engaged in industrial / service front, the district has failed to achieve a high level of industrialization.  The industrial units dotting the industrial map of Thiruvannamalai District are small and tiny industries.  The industrial activities are in low profile activities such as flourmills, silk reeling and footloose industries.  The concentration of such traditional units is centred around Tiruvannamali, Polur and Arni.  Considerable numbers of rice mill units are clustered in Cheyyar.  Out of 6078 units concentrated in this district, 41 % are falling under the category of cottage and rural industries.  Most of the units are based on local resources.  Fruit, vegetable and  floriculture are the major thrust sectors that are considered as sleeping giants in the district.  Entire Chengam and Cheyyar regions have great potential for promoting agro-based industries.  However, the existing potentiality has not been effectively exploited and can be attributed to poor entrepreneurship talent and initiative among the local youth.

The availability of rare herbs and medicinal plants in Jawadhu Hills and in melchengam offers promotion of medicinal extraction units in a big way.  The concentration of neem trees in Thiruvannamalai and adjoining district of Villupuram offers promotion of neem based industries in this district.  By and large, the district is suitable for promotion of agro-based industries.  The construction of SIPCOT Complex is under way and it is hoped that it will attract huge investment opportunities in future


Overview of the Industrial scenario

  • TN-Third largest economy in India.
  • TN-Sobriquets-Detroit of India, Back office to the world, Home to the organized retail .,etc.


  • Attractive fiscal benefits.
  • Pollution free Envoionment.
  • Adequate manpower capacity.
  • Cheap labour.
  • 17 Backward blocks.

Overview of the Industrial Scenario Type of in’trial units No of units Investment









Snap  shot – Industrial Vistas


Existing Industries Scenario

Emerging Industries Scenario

Rice Milling

Fruit Processing

Handloom Industry


Silk Weaving


Metal Product


Low value base products



Ethane based Chemical products


Iron Ore mining industry




Ceramic Products


Dairy development




Development of any region depends to a larges extent upon the infrastructure facilities available in the district concerned.  The availability of power, water, communication, transport, industrial Estates, technical education facilities are the sine quanon for industrial development of any region.  Unfortunately, Thiruvannamalai is not well placed in respect of infrastructure.

Industrial Estate – A Highlight


SIDCO Industrial Estate, Thiruvannamalai

25 Acres

SIPCOT Complex – Cheyyar – Upcoming

1350 Acres

SIDCO Industrial Estate, Cheyyar – Upcoming

38 Acres


Indian Bank is the lead bank of the district.  The total Credit Plan for the year 1998-99 envisages a total financial allocation of Rs.202.23 crores of which Rs.14.82 crores earmarked for industrial sector,  Rs. 25.50 crores for trade and services sectors respectively.


Indian Bank is the Lead Bank of the District.  There are 114 commercial banks, 24 Branches of District Central Co-operative Banks, 8 TNSCARDB, 4 Urban banks and 1 TIIC in the district.  The average population served per branch is 13530 showing the availability of good banking facilities in this District.

Banking Sector – a few indicators



No. of Bank Branches


Aggregate deposits in Rs. Lakhs


Aggregate advance in Rs.lakhs


Per capita deposit in Rs.lakhs


Per capita credit in Rs. Lakhs




The financial institutions can make a significant contribution to the development of business and industrial activities in the economy.  75 % of the commercial Banks are operating in rural areas.  The Total amount disbursed to industrial Sector is Rs.296 crores against the target of Rs.1561 crores


The Power distribution to the different parts of this district is made through 35 sub-stations apart from two more sub stations which will be shortly commissioned.  The maximum power transformer capacity is 2 x 15 MVA and the lowest capacity is 1 X 10 MVA.  It was reported that there is a scope for getting more power connection for industrial activities in this district.  At present power intensive units are very less.  The district gets power supply from the State grid.  The power consumption by industrial sector is less that 20% which shows the poor performance of the industrial sector.

Surface transport:

Surface transport is vital to gear up industrialization.  A well-established surface transport system will facilitate linking of the district with other marketing centers, which in turn will promote industrialization by providing access to far away markets.  The total surface road length of the district is 3499.5 K.M.

Details of the surface road length are furnished below:


Length in kms

State Highway


Major District roads


Panchayat Roads


Other Roads




The healthy development of any economy depends on modern telecommunication facilities.  The telecommunication services is being rendered to the public through Thiruvannamalai and Cheyyar Sub Divisions.  All the Taluk Headquarters and important places are connected by telephone.  There are 2 Head Post Offices, 73 sub post Offices and 391 Departmental post offices in the district.

Major Market Centers:

Thiruvannamalai, Arni, Cheyyar are the main marketing centers.  More that 50% of the business activities are taking place in Thiruvannamalai.  Arni specifically is known for silk weaving.

There are 19 regulated markets in the district and there are more than 30 weekly bazaar, mandis and shandy(sandai).  The total arrival of agriculture produce to the regulated markets was 67260 MT in the year .  The important arrivals were groundnut and paddy.


Performance of MSNE Sector – A Restropective & Prospective Analysis.

All the blocks in the district have been declared as either industrially backward EXCEPT Thiruvannamali Block..  True to the pattern of a low level industrialization, traditional and footloose industries constitute a major share in generation of investment, employment, output and a greater part of the income is still being generated from the primary sector.  Presence of food and food based industries, servicing and repairing industries, wood and wooden products manufacturing industries and metal based industries in this district.  The relative position of these industries has not showed any drastic changes in the late 90s.  The food and food based industries continue in the premier position.  However, wood and wooden based industries and hosiery and garment units leaped  into the third position.

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