Dr. Rajah Sir Muthiah Chettiar
A commemorative postage stamp on M. A. Muthiah Chettiar, Mayor of Madras city (1933) :
Issued by India
Issued on Dec 21, 1987
Description of Designs : The 60p. stamp has been designed by India Security Press, Nashik Road. The first-day cover design has been prepared by Shri R.N. Pasricha & the cancellation by Smt Alka Sharma.
Type : Stamp, Mint Condition
Colour : Single colour
Denomination : 60 Paise
Overall size : 3.91 x 2.90 cms.
Printing size : 3.55 x 2.54 cms.
Perforation : 13 x 13
Paper : Indigenous unwatermarked adhesive P G Matt coated paper
Number Printed : 10,00,000
Number per issue sheet : 35
Printing Process : Photogravure
Printed : India Security Press
Name : Muttaiya Annamalai Muthiah Chettiar
Born on Aug 5, 1905 at Kanadukathan, Madura District, Madras Presidency, British India [now in Sivaganga district, Tamil Nadu, India]
Died on May 12, 1984 at Madras, India
- Dr. Rajah Sir Muthiah Chettiar was born on 5th August 1905, son of Dr. Rajah Sir Annamalai Chettiar a distinguished member of the Nattukkottai Nagarathar community. He studied mostly in Madras, graduating from the Presidency College in 1922. He then went to Burma on his family’s business acquiring expertise in banking.
- He became a member of Madras Legislative Council, representing the South Indian Chamber of Commerce and Industry with which he was associated for 50 years, and was elected its President in 1941. He was appointed member of the Provincial Banking Enquiry Commission in 1929 and of the Madras Provincial Franchise Enquiry Committee (1931). In 1929, he became a member of the Corporation of Madras and was elected Mayor in 1933 and 1934. In 1943 he was elected president of the Federation of the Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry. He was associated with the Imperial Bank of India (now the State Bank of India) and the Indian Bank.
- Interest in education was part of the family heritage. He was associated with his father in making Sri Minakshi College, Chidambaram the nucleus of a university. While pursuing his political career as Chief Whip and Legislative Assembly Chairman of the Justice Party, he retained his interest in education. In 1936 he was appointed Minister-in-charge of Education, Public Health and Excise, and was also the Pro-Chancellor of Madras University for over a year. He remained on the Board of Management of the Pachaiyappa‘s Charities for 33 years. He was also on the Syndicate of the Madras University and the Board of Management of the Indian Institute of Technology, Madras, for some years.
- In 1948 he became Pro-Chancellor of Annamalai University which expanded to include the faculties of Education, Fine Arts, Culture, Law and Medicine. Two UGC Centres of Advanced Study in Marine Biology and Linguistics came into being. The Engineering and Technology Department developed into a Post-Graduate Centre. The Muthiah Polytechnic, Annamalainagar, and the Annamalai Polytechnic, Chettinad, were established.
- He was interested in the study of Tamil language and literature, Tamil music and culture. His services to the cause of Tamil earned him the title of ‘Tamil Isai Kavalar‘.
- He earned the reputation of being a sensitive Parliamentarian, impartial and balanced, as a leader of the opposition in 1939 and when he held charge of Local Administration and Hindu Religious Endowments. He was knighted in 1941. In 1946 he was elected member of the Constituent Assembly at New Delhi.
- In the world of business he was an important figure, holding such positions as Chairman of Chettinad Cement Corporation Ltd., Madras, Madura Coats Ltd., Consolidated Coffee Ltd., Coorg, and Coonoor Tea Estate, Coonoor, among others.
- He passed away on 12th May, 1984 in Madras, leaving an impressive record of interests and achievements.