28 Fascinating Facts about The Exotic Land Of Andaman And Nicobar Islands

Isha Shah
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Andaman Nicobar Islands are that beautiful part of India, which is highly under-appreciated. I have been to Goa, Mauritius, and Switzerland, and can easily rate Andaman as the more gorgeous one. The natural beauty of this place is far away from the civilized mess that we have created. I’m sure that the credit goes to the limited population of the Islands.
During my visit, I came across the most caring and sweet people of Andaman. Although most of them had migrated from main land India, they were the type of people with whom I instinctively felt safe. And so, interacting with them became easier. The conversations brought some interesting facts to the surface which I would like to share with you.
Let us have a look,

1. The name ‘Andaman’ has been derived from ‘Andoman’, the Malay word for the Hindu deity Hanuman, while ‘Nicobar’ means ‘the land of naked people’, which is literally so with the people there.

andaman mapSource

2. Andaman and Nicobar Islands consist of 572 Islands, out of which, only 36 are inhabited.

no of islandsSource

3. The total population of all of these islands is just 3,43,125 as per the Indian census of 2011.

population andamanSource

4. Bengali is the chief spoken language in the Islands, followed by Hindi, Malayalam and Telugu.

laguageSource

5. There are mainly 4 tribes left in Andaman and Nicobar Islands – the Jarawa, the Great Andamanese, the Sentinelese, and the Onge.

Onge_hut.3Source

6. The Sentinelese tribe is highly hostile and does not interact with the civilization at all.

setinelese.jpg1Source1/Source2

7. The Jarawa tribe’s population as per 2011 Indian census is just 380 people while the population of The Great Andamanee is just 52 people!

the-great-andamaneseSource

8. The Andaman and Nicobar islands have India’s first and only joint tri-service command – the Army, the Navy and the Air Force,due to its strategic importance.

tri commandSource

9. The strategic advantage of Islands was utilized even by the Great Maratha, the Chola Empire, the Danish, and the British through the centuries, as a maritime base for ships.

maratha navySource

10. Out of the whole chunk of Islands, a small number in the north namely the Coco Islands, belongs to Myanmar.

coco iskandsSource

11. During the period of World War 2, Japan occupied the Andaman and Nicobar Islands from 1942- 1945. You can still visit the Japanese bunkers all through the Islands.

jap bunkerSource

12. The first flag hoisting of Indian independence took place during Japanese occupation in Andaman on 30th December, 1943, and was done by Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose.

flag hoistingSource

13. The Islands were once named Shaheed (Martyr) & Swaraj (Self-rule) by Shri Subhas Chandra Bose.

shaheed swarajSource

14. UNESCO has declared the Great Nicobar Islands as one of the ‘World Network of Biosphere Reserves’.

bio spereSource

15. The Indian government is highly protective of the Nicobar Islands. Only the relatives of the resident tribal, or the military have access to them.

no entrySource

16. More than 92% of the land of Andaman Nicobar Islands is covered with forests, making it the highest forest coverage amongst all the Indian states and union territories.

forestSource

17. The backside of the Indian 20 rupee note represents a scene from Andaman and Nicobar Islands.

andaman-on-rupees-20-note-back (1)Source

18. Commercial fishing is banned in the Andaman and Nicobar Islands, which is precisely why there is so much flora and fauna left for the scuba divers.

no commercial fishingSource

19.This place is home for nesting of the largest sea turtles in the world.

turtleSource

20. The state animal of the Islands is the Dugong, a unique sea mammal that is extremely shy to mate.

dugongsource

21. The Chatham Island saw mill, which is presently run by the state government, was established in 1883 by the British. It is Asia’s largest and oldest saw mill.

Chatham-Island saw millSource

22. Baratang Island has the only active mud volcano of India, and also houses the most beautiful lime stone caves.

baratang1Source1/Source2

23. Baratang is the prime location for the Jarawa tribe and is fiercely protected by the forest officials. It’s against law to take pictures or to interact with this tribe.

jarawa protectionSource

24. The Radhanagari beach of Havelock Island has been rated as Asia’s best beach.

radhanagar-beachSource

25. The Indira Point in Nicobar Islands the southernmost point of India’s territory. It houses just one village comprising of just 4 households.

indirapointSource

26. The only active volcano of India and even in South Asia is in the Barren Island, Andaman.

barren islandSource

27. The Viper Chain Gang Jail in Viper Island was the first jail built in India with a special agenda of housing the serious trouble makers.

viper jailSource

28. The infamous Kalapani jail had 698 cells designed for solitary confinement; each cell measured only 15 feet by 9 feet, with a single window 10 feet above the floor.

This jail has a story of its own to tell, for more, you can read this detailed article.

kalapani1Source

Really interesting, wasn’t it? Share it with your friends and family who are planning to visit the islands or you think should definitely plan to visit.

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