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Tadepalligudem is a town in Andhra Pradesh. It is found in the middle of the district of West Godavari, some 50 kilometers of the district’s headquarter town of Eluru. The town also serves as a municipality, and contributes to the distinction of West Godavari as the second most densely populated region in Andhra Pradesh, just right after the capital city of Hyderabad. The town has an average elevated position of 34 meters (about 112 feet) above mean sea level. Some of the surrounding towns that constitute its boundaries are Bhimadalu to the west, Dubacherla to the northwest, Madhavaram to the northeast and Pentapudu to the south. According to the census taken in 2001, the town had a total population of 102,303 people, of which females make up a bigger part, with 51% while the males constitute 49%. It is a rather prominent town for education due to its good number of schools and colleges. As such, it is no surprise that its literacy rate is higher than the national average of 59.5%, rated at 65%. Tadepalligudem is considered as one of the hubs of the West Godavari district, with the major languages spoken being Telugu and English.

Tadepalligudem did play a very important role during World War II. During this time, the British East India Company built an airport in the town in order to accommodate the military’s need for aircraft during the war. While this 2 kilometer airport is no longer in use today, it played a vital role for the Allies’ success in the Asian campaign. Currently, there are no plans to utilize the airport for commercial use, although such a move will surely bring in more income and boost the commerce and trade of the town.

The main source of livelihood among the people of Tadepalligudem is agriculture. Specifically, the town is famous for its rice cultivation and jaggery market. For those who do not know, jaggery is a traditional, unrefined non-centrifugal sugar that is consumed chiefly in Asia, South America and Africa. It is a concentrated product of cane juice with the molasses and crystals not separated, causing a color variation of golden brown to dark brown. While the state of Maharashtra is the largest producer and consumer of jaggery, the state of Andhra Pradesh, Tadepalligudem is the chief producer of the product.

The town is also famous for its godowns, a warehouse for the storage of food. In fact, most of Andhra’s food products are stored here. Tadepalligudem also grows other products such as banana, tumeric and sugar. Much of the crops and agriculture are fed by the Yerrakulava Canal, which also happens to be a main source of drinking water of the town, along with Pampula cheruvu.

Industries in the town include rice mills – Tadepalligudem has one of the largest numbers of rice mills in the district. Food, fat and fertilizer industries are also enjoying a brisk success, producing soap oil and food oil contents like palm oil and rice oil. Transportation is also a big industry of the town, with more than 6,000 transport vehicles, making it one of the biggest in Andhra Pradesh. Its transport industry is almost equal to the coastal capital of Vijayawada.


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