Changala Maram or Chain Tree is a major attraction for travelers who pass through the Calicut- Wayanad route. You can see steel chains hanging from the branch of the tree. The tree has a story to tell.
The myth of the tree is associated with the tribal chief Karinthandan, who lived between 1700-1750 AD. During the British colonial era, Wayanad didn’t have any developed roads. Wayanad was blessed with dense forests and hills only the tribes knew the paths through these forests. Karinthandan belonged to the Paniya tribe, he was the chief of that tribal community.
He knew every path in the forest.So when the British Viceroy announced a reward for to those who find a way from Thamarassery to Wayanad to through the forest, a British engineer took the help of Karinthandan to find the route. After discovering the hidden routes in the forest the engineer took Karinthandan to the top of the hill and shot him dead so that he could take the credit for finding the route.The British built the road through the forest, which is now known as the Thamarassery Churam.
Myth related to Karithandan and ChainTree
After making the road the British started to exploiting the resources of Wayanad. But the road became haunted, and a lot of accidents happened on the road, and the people believed that all of this is because of Karinthandan’s ghost. So the people called a priest to find a solution to this problem. After a lot of effort, the priest was able to chain the ghost to a Ficus tree, which is now known as the Changala Maram or Chain Tree. The tree is now grown to 25 feet height. A small temple built near the tree and started to worship Karinthandan.