Wednesday, August 30, 2006

Pondicherry, India is a popular Petanque Spot

Pondicherry (or “Puduchery”) is located in Southern India. Back in 1673, the French East India Company set up shop and the region became quite a popular trading center. For this reason, the British and the French have fought over Pondicherry for many years, finally reverting back to the French in 1814 (and remaining a French territory despite British rule of India in the 1850’s). With India’s independence (1947) eventually, Pondicherry was brought back under the control of India (1962).
But regardless of who is overall in control of the area, even today there is a great deal of French influence in Pondicherry. The city’s layout is based on the French grid pattern divided into the French quarter and the Indian quarter. Many streets still have French names and French style villas and architecture is a common sight.

You can still see the French flag fluttering in Pondicherry. There are many residents with French passports, whose ancestors were in French Governmental service and who chose to remain French at the time of Independence. This gives them some privileges with France that are not available to other Indians. Apart from the monuments pertaining to the French Period, there is the French Consulate in Pondicherry and several cultural organisations, Alliance Francaise, and even the Foyer du Soldat for war veterans of the French Army.
[many thanks to Wikipedia for information about Pondicherry]

No comments: