A small village in Kerala, named Kodinhi, is home to a mind boggling 220 sets of twins. This phenomenon has baffled researchers, especially in view of the fact that there are only 2,000 families in the village.
Dr Krishnan Sribiju, a local medical practitioner and twin enthusiast has been studying and analyzing it for the last 2 years. He told the Telegraph newspaper that 220 is the official, registered number of twins in the village, though the real number might be even higher. He also said that the total number of twins is increasing with each passing year, so much so that in the past 10 years the number of twins in Kodinhi may have doubled.
According to him, the possible reason behind the twin phenomenon could be the food habits of the villagers. “Without access to detailed biochemical analysis equipment I cannot say for certain what the reason is, but I feel that it is something to do with what the villagers eat and drink,” Sribiju told Telegraph.
“Considering the low level of twin births in India, more so Asia, it is surprising to witness an Indian village being home to an overwhelming number of twins. Also, twins are born usually to older, more mature women. In Kodinhi that is not the case because marriage happens at a much younger age, here at around 18–20 years old, and families begin very soon after,” said Sribiju.
The villagers, which is now nicknamed as the ‘twin town’, have proudly established the Twins and Kin Association (TAKA) to register and provide support for the twins of Kodinhi and their families. Raising twins is both economically and physically demanding for the mother. TAKA performs the role of educating and supporting villagers.
Globally, Igbo Ora, a sleepy agrarian town 80 kilometers from Lagos, Nigeria, is the twin capital of the world. Estimates suggest that there are 158 sets of twins for every 1,000 live births.