Infobox Indian Jurisdiction
type = union territory
state_name = Puducherry
native_name = புதுச்சேர
Territoire de Pondichéry
Union Territory of Pondicherry
capital = Pondicherry
largest_city = Pondicherry
latd = 11.93|longd=79.83

base_map_label = no
abbreviation = IN-PY
official_languages = Tamil, French, Telugu, Malayalam
legislature_type = Unicameral
legislature_strength = 30
leader_title_1 = Lt. Governor
leader_name_1 = Lieutenant General Bhopinder Singh(Addl.)
leader_title_2 = Chief Minister
leader_name_2 = V. Vaithilingam
established_date = 1 July 1963
area_total = 492
area_rank = 3rd
area_magnitude = 8
population_year = 2001
population_total = 973829
population_rank = 2nd
districts = 4
urban_population = 505959
website = www.pondicherry.nic.in

Puducherry (formerly audio|Pondicherry.ogg|Pondicherry; _ta. புதுச்சேரி or பாண்டிச்சேரி, _te. పాండిచెర్రి, _ml. പുതുശ്ശേരി, _fr. Pondichéry) is a Union Territory of India. It is a former French colony, consisting of four non-contiguous enclaves, or districts, and named for the largest, Pondicherry.

In September 2006, the territory changed its official name from Pondicherry to the vernacular original, [ [http://www.hindu.com/2006/08/22/stories/2006082207481000.htm Bill to rename Pondicherry as Puducherry passed] ] Puducherry, which means "New village" [ [http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/south_asia/5365248.stm BBC: "New name for old French territory"] ] It is also known as The French Riviera of the East ("La Côte d'Azur de l'Est").


Pondicherry consists of four unconnected districts: Pondicherry, Karaikal, and Yanam on the Bay of Bengal and Mahé on the Arabian Sea. Puducherry (Pondicherry) and Karaikal are by far the larger ones, and are both enclaves of Tamil Nadu. Yanam and Mahé are enclaves of Andhra Pradesh and Kerala, respectively. The territory has a total area of 492 km²: "Puducherry (city)" 293 km², "Karaikal" 160 km², "Mahé" 9 km² and "Yanam" 30 km². It has 900,000 inhabitants (2001).


French influence

There is evidence of Romans visiting Pondicherry around 2500 years back. The Pondicherry Museum has Roman cups, jars and the coins traded in Pondicherry at that time.

A remarkable degree of French influence in Pondicherry exists to this date. Pondicherry was designed based on the French (however originally Dutch) grid pattern and features neat sectors and perpendicular streets. The entire town is divided into 2 sections, the French Quarter ('Ville Blanche' or 'White town') and the Indian quarter ('Ville Noire' or 'Black Town'). Many streets still retain their French names and French style villas are a common sight in Puducherry. In the French quarter, the buildings are typically colonial style with long compounds and stately walls. The Indian (Tamil) quarter consists of houses lined with verandas, and houses with large doors and grills. These French and Indian style houses are identified and its architecture is preserved from destruction by an organization named INTACH. If ever anyone wishes to demolish the existing house in the town area and rebuild, they need the permission from this organization and the new built house should resemble the same architectural beauty it possessed before destruction. The use of French language can be still seen in Pondicherry.

The history of French India holds in regard Joseph Francois Dupleix. The Statue of Dupleix in Pondicherry gives some idea about the immense contribution of the once Governor General in trying to consolidate French direction, at least in some parts of India. Dupleix can be held primarily responsible for the Carnatic Wars as a repercussion of the trouble between England and France in Europe. At first Joseph Dupleix was successful in resisting the attacks of the English East India Company, but he lost in the later battles.

The Statue of Dupleix is Pondicherry's tribute to the his contribution in the building of the city. Joseph Dupleix was the governor of Pondicherry and served the city. With the end of his governorship in 1754, the dream of France to become the supreme power in India also came to an untimely end. The Statue of Dupleix in Pondicherry was commissioned by France in 1870. Another statue was built in France and thus homage was paid to the French soldier who served France's interests in India.When The Statue of Dupleix of Pondicherry was first built, then this 2.88 m tall statue stood over six granite pillars, heavily decorated and curved, at the Place du Republique. Later on, the position of the statue was changed. Now, the statue of Dupleix stands in another place. When you walk in the promenade, now known as Goubert Avenue, then you will find this statue at its southern end, now overlooking a children's park.

=Official languages of government= IndiaCensusPop
title= Pondicherry population
1961= 369079
1971= 471707
1981= 604471
1991= 807785
2001= 973829
footnote= Source: Census of Indiacite web|url=http://www.pon.nic.in/stategovt/pandr/vision2020/pdf_files/APPENDIX.pdf|title=Population Analysis and Projections|work=Census of India|publisher=www.pon.nic.in|accessdate=2008-06-04]
Official languages of Pondicherry are French, Tamil, Telugu and Malayalam. Status of each languages varies differently with respect to each district. When communicating between districts of different languages, generally English is used for convenienceFact|date=June 2007.

1.Tamil: Language used by the Pondicherry Government, especially when communicating within and between the Tamil majority districts of Pondicherry and Karikal along with issuing official decrees. Also the official language in Tamil Nadu state.

2.French: It is also the official language of Pondicherry Union territory. It was the official language of French India (1673-1954) and its official language status was preserved by Traité de Cession (Treaty of Cession) signed by India and France on 28 May 1956.

It remained as the de jure official language of Puducherry U.T by the "Article XXVIII" of Traité de Cession which states that,
* "Le français restera langue officielle des Établissements aussi longtemps que les représentants élus de la population n'auront pas pris une décision différente" (French version)
*"The French language shall remain the official language of the Establishments so long as the elected representatives of the people shall not decide otherwise" (English version)

=Regional official languages= 3. Telugu: Another official language of Pondicherry, but used more within Yanam (Telugu district). Telugu is widely spoken in Pondicherry by Reddys, Chettys and Naidus. So, more correctly, it is considered a regional official language of Puducherry while being the official language of Yanam District. It also has an official language status in the state of Andhra Pradesh.

4. Malayalam: Another official language of Puducherry, but used only within Mahé (Malayalam district). So, more correctly, it is considered a regional official language of Pondicherry while being the official language of Mahé District. It also has an official language status in Kerala State and Lakshadweep Islands Union Territory.

=Language spoken in numbers= As of 2001, number of people speaking in each official languages are, Fact|date=June 2007
*Tamil: 820,749 (In Pondicherry and Karaikal Districts)
*Malayalam: 36,823 (In Mahe District only)
*Telugu: 31,362 (In Pondicherry and Yanam Districts)
*French: Above 10,000

=Government & administration=

pecial Administration Status

According to Traité de cession dated 1956, the four former French colonies were assured of maintaining their special administrative status. That is why Pondicherry is the only Union Territory with some special provisions like Legislative Assembly, French as official language, etc.

The Article II of Traité de Cession states that,
* The Establishments will keep the benefit of the special administrative status which was in force prior to 1 November 1954. Any constitutional changes in this status which may be made subsequently shall be made after ascertaining the wishes of the people.

Pondicherry Freedom Fighters

* Way back in 1787 and 1791, farmers of Karaikal agitated against the heavy land tax imposed by the French. The first war of Indian Independence had its impact in the French settlements but it did not attract the attention of the rulers, as the incidents were few and considered as local. People employed legal means to fight against the French. In 1873, an advocate, "Ponnuthammbi Pillai", moved to Paris court and won the case in which he was awarded a penalty by a French Magistrate in Pondicherry for walking into the court with footwear.

Pondicherry in literature

* Ananda Ranga Pillai (1709-1761), a "dubash" and famous writer.
* Pondicherry was the setting for the first third of the Booker prize-winning novel "Life of Pi" by Yann Martel.
* Lee Langley's novel "A house in Pondicherry" was likewise set there.
* In Roald Dahl's "Charlie and the Chocolate Factory", Prince Pondicherry has Willy Wonka build him a castle made entirely of chocolate, which quickly melts.
* In The second Sherlock Holmes novel, "The Sign of Four" by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, the family of a murder victim resides at Pondicherry Lodge.
* Some Novels of M. Mukundan,Mahe former employee of French Embassy and famous Malayalam Writer .


=Macro-economic trend= This is a chart of trend of gross state domestic product of Puducherry at market prices [http://mospi.nic.in/mospi_nad_main.htm estimated] by "Ministry of Statistics and Programme Implementation" with figures in millions of Indian Rupees.

= See also =
* Road Network in Puducherry District
* Causes for Liberation of French colonies in India
* Municipal Administration in French India
* List of Chief Ministers of Pondicherry
* Pondicherry (Lok Sabha constituency)
* Pondicherry Municipal Council
* French East India Company
* Coup d'État de Yanaon
* French colonial empire
* French India
* Life of Pi
* Rajiv Gandhi College of Veterinary and Animal Sciences
* Pondicherry Engineering College
* Auroville
* Ariyankuppam
* Muthialpet, Puducherry

= References = reflist

External links

* [http://pondicherry.nic.in/ Official website of the Government of the Union Territory of Pondicherry]
* [http://www.links.jstor.org/sici?sici=0362-8949(19500322)19%3A6%3C62%3ATFOFI%3E2.0.CO%3B2-%23 Future of French India, by Russel H. Fifield (Associate Professor of Political Science at University of Michigan]
* [http://www.pon.nic.in/open/regions/pondy/origin.htm Pondicherry - its Early Origins]
* [http://pib.nic.in/feature/feyr98/fe0898/f1808986.html Freedom struggle in Pondicherry]
* [http://meaindia.nic.in/treatiesagreement/1956/chap133.htm Indian Ministry for External Affaires - 1956 Treaty of Cession]
* [http://asi.nic.in/index3.asp?sublink2id=24 Exploration Off Arikamedu by Archaeological Survey of India]
* [http://pondycentralexcise.gov.in/ Commissioner of Central Excise and Service Tax, Pondicherry, falling under Ministry of Finance of Government of India]


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