A commemorative postage stamp on the Golden Jubilee of the Independence of Puducherry, a French colonial settlement in India :
Issued on Dec 30, 2005
Type : Stamp, Mint Condition
Colour : Multicolor
Denomination : 500 Paise
Stamps Printed : 0.8 Million in sheets of 35
Printing Process : Photogravure
Printer : India Security Press, Nashik
- Pondicherry, situated in the Coromandel Coast, derives its name from the French word “Pondi”, which means beautiful, is celebrating its golden jubilee of independence from the French colonial rule.
- Pondicherry is one of the oldest habitations in the world. The human skeleton excavated in a nearby village called Bommayarpalayam dates back to 0.15 million years.
- The archaeological excavations at Arikamedu, near Pondicherry, indicate the existence of a commercial city for the Romans before the Christian era.
- Pondicherry has 535 rock edicts and two copper plates. These copper plates and the twelve volumes of the Anandha Rangapillai Diary depict the history of Pondicherry and its significance in South India.
- The Pallavas, Cholas, Pandyas, and Mughals ruled this place. In 16th century the Portuguese, the Dutch, the Danish and the French had established their trade centres in Pondicherry, but it was the French who came to Pondicherry in 1673 AD and ruled till 1954.
- Legend has it that Krishna Deva Raya, the Emperor of Vijaynagar, while touring this place, asked ‘Aayi’ a lady in Pondicherry to get a well dug for public use. Aayi got it done and the well is known as ‘Aayi Kulam’. People expressed their gratitude by constructing a memorial and placing her copper statue in it. The inscription on the western side of the memorial, which is an example of the French architecture, narrates this tale.
- Before independence, Pondicherry consisted of five enclaves, namely, Pondicherry, Karaikal, Chandranagur, Mahe and Yanam. Just before independence, as desired by the people of Chandranagur, it was merged with West Bengal on 2nd May 1950.