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The Malaipanicker community is exclusively found in Malappuram District, Kerala. They received constitutional recognition as a Scheduled Tribe only in 2003. Their primary language is Malayalam, with certain variations unique to their community. The social structure is based on the family, and the head of the family is known as the 'Karnavar,' who plays a role in maintaining social control within the community.

Historically, the Malaipanickers were cultivators of the land owned by the Nilambur Kovilakom (royal family). They used to practice shifting cultivation, a traditional method of farming. However, with changing times, they have transitioned into marginal farmers. Many of them now have small plots of land where they cultivate crops.

Despite being engaged in agriculture, the majority of Malaipanickers work as agricultural laborers. They often seek employment on larger farms or plantations to supplement their income. The shift from being cultivators to laborers might have been influenced by factors like land ownership and economic conditions.

Developmental Concerns:

Smaller communities like the Malaipanickers, with populations below 1000, often face unique challenges that require specific attention from policymakers. Ensuring social justice for such communities becomes essential to uplift their living standards and promote overall development.

In conclusion, the Malaipanicker community in Malappuram District has a history of cultivation but has now become marginal farmers and agricultural laborers. Addressing their specific developmental needs can help improve their socio-economic conditions and ensure equal opportunities for progress.

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