Category: Personalities

Prisoner in Cuddalore, Prince in Sweden!

History is full of strange twists. Here is one I stumbled upon. Siege of Cuddalore About 185 Kms south of  Madras (now Chennai) is the quiet port of Cuddalore, where you can see the ruins of Fort St. David. Back in1783, Cuddalore was far from quiet: The French were entrenched in the Fort and the

Robert Clive and the Battle of Purasai

By S.V.Kaushik  I know what you were thinking when you read the title…. Really, did Robert Clive fight a battle in Purasai? Was he the Englishman who colonised the place we now call Purasaiwakkam? My response to the first question is: it all depends on which Purasai you are talking about. And the answer to

The Last Grand Nawab: Wallajah

By S.V. Kaushik December 2016: India played the 5th Test against England at Chepauk Cricket Stadium. Over 1300 balls were bowled from the Wallajah End before England was crushed. Ever wondered why the Wallajah End is called Wallajah? Your response would probably be “That’s because, that’s where the Wallajah Road is, silly!” Yeah, so why

Mind your language

Connect the dots… English medium schools, Lord Macaulay, Treaty of Aix-la-Chappelle, Madras University. It’s only been a few days since the government ‘suggested’ the use of Hindi over English in social media platforms. This reminds us of another story, but from a different era – the story of how we ended up making English our

What did they see in Chennai?

‘Chennai is a grand city where tradition and modernity co-exist. Well, that’s what everyone says, the guides… the books… the articles… generally every Chennai-vaasi. And that probably is also the impression that most visitors carry back with them today. But what about those who visited many eons ago? Many have come to these shores across

The city of St. Thomas

Chennai, a study in contrasts, where IT coexists with cottage industry, modern glass buildings live cheek by jowl with agraharams and orchids are sold along with the ubiquitous jasmine. So it really comes as no surprise that temple bells and church bells unite in their call for prayers. And as much as temples contribute to