De-facto Transfer of Pondicherry
A commemorative postage stamp on the Golden Jubilee of the Independence of Puducherry, a French colonial settlement in India :
Issued on Dec 30, 2005
Issued for : The Department of Posts is happy to issue a stamp to commemorate the Golden Jubilee of the De Facto Transfer of Pondicherry.
Stamp & FDC : Sankha Samanta
Cancellation : Alka Sharma
Type : Stamp, Mint Condition
Colour : Multicolor
Denomination : 500 Paise
Print Quantity : 0.8 Million
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 Vijayanagar, 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. Pondicherry and Karaikal are enclaved in Tamilnadu, Mahe in Kerala and Yanam in Andhra Pradesh. The uniqueness of Pondicherry is manifest in the diversity of geography, language, culture and conventions duly represented by the people of all the four enclaves.
- Pondicherry symbolizes the multicultural identity of our country. The official languages of Pondicherry are English, French, Tamil, Malayalam and Telugu in view of the different geographical locations of the constituents of the Union Territory. Since independence, Pondicherry has been attracting people from different parts of the world. Apart from the notable achievement of attaining 100% literacy, significant achievements in the sphere of women’s emancipation have also been made.
- To many, Pondicherry is synonymous with Sri Aurobindo Ashram. Maharishi Aurobindo discovered his spiritual senses and dreams in this ‘City of Peace’.
- Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru described Pondicherry as a window to the French culture. The immediate post-merger development was the establishment of the JIPMER, a medical college named after him.
- ‘Aayi Mandapam’ which has been depicted in the stamp is an appropriate recognition of the great people of Pondicherry, known for their love for art and culture and for their patriotism.
- Text : Based on material received from proponent.