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(Portuguese: Ilhas de Goa, lit. 'Islands of Goa')
Tiswadi taluka in North Goa district.png
Location of Tiswadi in North Goa, Goa
Coordinates: 15°29′55″N73°49′46″E / 15.498598°N 73.829341°E / 15.498598; 73.829341
Country Flag of India.svg  India
State Goa
District North Goa
Headquarters Panaji
Settlements1 City
9 Towns
22 Villages
   Tehsildar na
   Lok Sabha constituency North Goa
   Assembly constituency na
   MLA na
   Literacy rate 81.83%
  Sex ratio966
Vehicle registration GA-07

Tiswadi, formerly known as Ilhas de Goa, is a sub district in the district of North Goa, situated in the Indian coastal state of Goa. It is an estuarine island situated on the confluence of the Mandovi and Zuari rivers. It was one of the first territories to be annexed by Portugal in the sixteenth century. Both the state capital Panaji, and the erstwhile capital Old Goa lie within the subdistrict. It is the biggest and most populated of the six major islands between the Mandovi and Zuari rivers.


It is made up of 7 major islands within the Mandovi, namely:


The word Tiswadi itself, originated in the late 1970s and it referred to thirty settlements of the Gaud Saraswat Brahmans who settled here after they migrated to Goa from Aryavarta. The descendants of these settlers now form the native Bammon (Catholic Brahman) community.[ citation needed ]

The previous official name Ilhas de Goa simply means Islands of Goa, in Portuguese. [1]


It is geographically made up of several small riverine islands within the Mandovi River forming its northern boundary, the Cumbarjua Canal making its eastern border, and the Zuari River making up its southern border.

As the native name suggests, the sub-district includes the smaller islands of:


Tiswadi, along with the rest of Goa, regularly exchanged hands between the Muslim Bhahmani Sultanate and the Hindu Vijayanagara Empire of South India prior to the 14th century. By the 15th century, the Bijapur Sultanate under the Adil Shahi dynasty conquered Goa, and it came under Muslim rule. The City of Goa was the regional capital of the sultanates as well as a hub for the Hajj pilgrimage. Numerous temples were demolished under the rule of the sultanates. The Adil Shahi dynasty was defeated by a Portuguese–Vijayanagar alliance, and Ilhas de Goa was conquered under Afonso de Albuquerque in 1510. By the time Tiswadi was relieved from Muslim rule, Hindus formed a minority in the region, and the Portuguese started conversion efforts against the Muslim majority. The populace was made to accept Christianity or leave the islands. There was a mass exodus of natives who left the islands, for the safer havens of Ponda and the Canara, Malabar Coast, Chandgad and Joida.[ citation needed ]

The first temple to be built in Panjim was in the mid-1700s, when the Portuguese authorities granted permission to the Hindus to build their place of worship.[ citation needed ]

The evangelization of Tiswadi was spearheaded by the Dominicans, who were assigned 15 villages, and the Jesuits, who were assigned the remaining part along with the smaller islands of Chorão and Divar, by the Portuguese authorities. In 1552, the island of Chorão had a population of 300 Christians out of 3,000 and, by this time, also had a small church which was visited by a Jesuit from St. Paul's every Sunday. By the end of 1559, over 1,200 had accepted baptism. The following year, the first bishop from the Jesuit order, Dom João Nunes de Barreto, set up residence in Chorão, which eventually became a Noviciate. Most of Chorão's population converted en masse to Roman Catholicism in mid-1560. [2]

By January 1563, the Jesuit provincial claimed that Ilhas de Goa had been completely Christianized, with a population of 70,000, the great majority of which had converted in the last six years, corresponding to the terms of Viceroys Francisco Barreto and Constantino of Braganza, whose 2+12-year term saw between 25,000 and 30,000 conversions. [2]


As per the 2011 Census of India, Tiswadi Taluka has a population of 177,219 people. The sex-ratio of Tiswadi Taluka is around 966, compared to the state average of 973. The literacy rate of Tiswadi Taluka is 81.83% out of which 84.49% males are literate and 79.07% females are literate. The total area of Tiswadi is 193.64 sq.km with population density of 915 per sq.km. Out of total population, 21.19% of population of the Taluka lives in Urban area and 78.81% lives in Rural area. [3]


At the time of the 2011 Census of India, 65.51% of the population of Tiswadi Taluka spoke Konkani, 10.63% Hindi, 6.62% Marathi, 5.26% Kannada and 2.77% Urdu as their first language. [4]

Languages of Tiswadi Taluka (2011)

   Konkani (65.51%)
   Hindi (10.63%)
   Marathi (6.62%)
   Kannada (5.26%)
   Urdu (2.77%)
  Others (9.21%)


The majority of the population in Tiswadi Taluka follow Hinduism, although Christians and Muslims are a significant minority.

62.50% of the population in the Taluka follow Hinduism, 27.73% Christianity, 9.27% Islam and the remaining 0.50% follow other religions or stated no religion. [3]

Religion in Tiswadi Taluka


Panjim, Velha Goa and its monuments, Divar, Chorão



1Panjim Municipal CorporationGoa40000


1 Chimbel Census TownGoa15,289
2 Calapor or Santa Cruz, Goa Census TownGoa14,077
3Murda, Census TownGoa7,517
4 Bambolim Census TownGoa6,885
5 Corlim Census TownGoa6,568
6 Mercurim Census TownGoa4,970
7 Cumbarjua Census TownGoa4,917
8 Goa Velha Census TownGoa4,322
9Jua Census TownGoa4,134
10 Old Goa (Velha Goa) Census TownGoa2,550
11 Ribandar Census TownGoa2,450
12 Tiswadi Census TownGoa2,300


#VillagesAdministrative DivisionPopulation
13Goalim MoulaTiswadi441
21 Siridão Tiswadi2,417 [5]

See also

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  1. "Definitions for ilhas".
  2. 1 2 Sarasvati's Children: A History of the Mangalorean Christians, Alan Machado Prabhu, I.J.A. Publications, 1999, pp. 100–101.
  3. 1 2 "C-1 Population By Religious Community". census.gov.in. Retrieved 15 September 2020.
  4. "C-16 Population By Mother Tongue - Goa". censusindia.gov.in. Retrieved 4 October 2019.
  5. "Siridao Village Population - Tiswadi - North Goa, Goa". Census 2011 India. 29 May 1980. Retrieved 17 November 2016.