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Native ameKaraikkudi
StateTamil Nadu
Altitude82 m
Total Population186422 (2001)
Other information
Time zoneIST (UTC+5:30)

     Home | City | Karaikkudi

Karaikudi ( ) is a city in Sivaganga District in the Indian state of Tamil Nadu. It is the largest city in Sivaganga district, and is the biggest city in the Chettinad region. Chettinad literally 'Chetti land' in Tamil, is a collection of 76 villages/towns. Chettinad stretched from Ramnad District and Pudukottai State of 'British' India. The Chettiars, or more properly the Nattukottai Chettiars, came from the Chettinad. Originally involved in salt trading, sometime in the 18th century they became more widely known as financiers and facilitators for the trade in a range of commodities. By the early 19th century finance had become the primary specialisation of the Chettiars, and they became famed lenders to great land-owning families and in underwriting their trade in grain through the provision of hundis. Several members of the Chettiar community migrated to nearby Sri Lanka and Southeast Asia, particularly Singapore, Malaysia, Vietnam and Burma, in the 19th and early 20th centuries. Karaikudi became popular because the area is famous for the type of houses built with limestone called 'karai veedu' and also may be due to a plant called "Karai" which is widely spread over this area.

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