Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India


Chennai, formerly Madras, is the 4th largest city in India. It began as Madraspatnam, a fishing village, where the British East India Company built a fort and trading post in 1639-40. The weaving of cotton fabrics was a local industry then, and the English invited weavers and merchants to settle near the fort. By 1652, the factory of Fort St. George was recognized as a presidency (an administrative unit governed by a president). The company then began expanding its control. By 1801, the last of the local rulers had been shorn of his powers and the English had become masters of southern India, with Madras as their administrative and commercial capital. [Adapted from Encyclopedia Britannica]

Heroes of the day (beach)

Memorial for MGR


Catch of the day


Government museum complex


High court, George Town

Geroge Town's main landmark is this huge Indo-Saracenic structure built in 1892, and is apparently the largest judicial building in the world after the Courts of London.

Lawyers


Shanties & circus near Fort


CMBT bus station

Chennai Mofussil Bus Terminus, or Koyambedu bus stand, is claimed to be the largest bus station in Asia

"In the [train's] dining-car ... South Indian languages, excessively vowelled, rattled about me. The South Indians were beginning to unwind; they were lapping up their liquidized foods. Food was a pleasure to their hands. Chewing, sighing with pleasure, they squelched curds and rice between their fingers. They squelched and squelched; then, in one swift circular action, as though they wished to take their food by surprise, they gathered some of the mixture into a ball, brought their dripping palms close to their mouths and - flick! - rice and curds were shot inside; and the squelching, chattering and sighing began again."

[--VS Naipaul, An Area of Darkness, p240, 1962-64]

 



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