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This metropolis is often called the cultural capital of India for its deep-rooted traditions and long heritage. Chennai is a city younger than its image. More than any other city in India, it is a true reflection of this country’s diversity. In a time span of just over 350 years, Chennai has blossomed into a charming city that has a large heart and is very welcoming. It is city that encourages all forms of development, both modern technology and the traditional arts and crafts, and it embraces a series of paradoxes. It was in 1639 that Francis Day and Andrew Cogan, agents for the English East India Company, acquired a strip of land on lease from the Vijayanagar King. They built the Fort St.George, which remains of the city’s important landmarks and serves as the Government Secretariat today. It was built to set up a factory that served as a nucleus for British settlements that began to be formed. Surrounding villages like Triplicane, Purasawalkam, Egmore and Chetput slowly merged with the new developments, to form Chennapatnam, as it was known. The city was called Madras till 1996 and then renamed Chennai. Today this buoyant metropolis is a blend of the old and the new, the traditional and the modern.

Spread over 200 square kilometres with the Bay of Bengal on the east, the city is the gateway to the rest of South India. There are verdant green patches found amidst the high-tech, high-rise buildings.

With a population of around six million, it is India’s fourth largest city. From before days of Independence to present , the people of Chennai have played an important role in shaping the country’s political destiny.

Chennai’s Pride Chennai’s newest pride is the Tidel Park, the home for the Information Technology Industry. It is spread over 1.28 million sq.ft. of built up area. The Tidel Park is an architectural marvel and houses several large national and international software companies in its premises. The City of Grace And Peace.
A playground of mighty kings of Chola, Pandya, Pallava and Vijaynagar kingdoms, Chennai embraces a vast and a long history. Due to its strategic position in the coastal area it has become a major point of Naval administration since the first century. Most of the earlier dynasties had ports in and around the city. The might and valor of the illustrious rulers of various regimes has engrossed the foreign traders like the Portuguese, the French and finally the British.

An erstwhile settlement of the colonial forces, Chennai has attained the prestigious status as one of the presidencies under the imperial power. St George Fort, which captures the attention of the onlookers, was built in the year 1640 by the British as their seat of administration. Later this was captured by the French in 1746. By the treaty of Aix-la-Chapelle, the British regained its control and they fortified the bastions to prevent any further attacks. From that date onwards till India get freedom, this city was ruled by the British under whom the city has shown dynamic development.

After Independence, the city has become the capital of Tamil Nadu and it is this city, which has changed the political equations of the whole nation. Chennai has witnessed violent agitation against imposition of Hindi as the national language in the year 1965 and after that the city has been the hub of regional politics.