Thiruvananthapuram, commonly known by its former name Trivandrum, is the capital of the Indian state of Kerala. It is the most populous city in Kerala with a population of 957,730 as of 2011. The encompassing urban agglomeration population is around 1.68 million. Located on the west coast of India near the extreme south of the mainland, Thiruvananthapuram is a major information technology hub in Kerala and contributes 55% of the state's software exports as of 2016. Referred to by Mahatma Gandhi as the "Evergreen city of India", the city is characterised by its undulating terrain of low coastal hills.
The present regions that constitute Thiruvananthapuram were ruled by the Ays who were feudatories of the Chera dynasty. In the 12th century, it was conquered by the Kingdom of Venad. In the 18th century the king Marthanda Varma expanded the territory and founded the princely state of Travancore and made Thiruvananthapuram its capital. Travancore became the most dominant state in Kerala by defeating the powerful Zamorin of Kozhikode in the battle of Purakkad in 1755.