History

                This Karaikal area formed an integral part of the Pallava kingdom in the eighth century(C 731-796). Poet Sekkizhar (992-1042) describes the town as "vanga mali kadar karaikal", the 'Karaikal of many vessels on the coast' in his Peria puranam.  In 1738, Dumas, who was anxious to extend the French territory in India by smooth means, negotiated with Sahuji of Thanjavur for possession of Karaikal, the fortress of Karukalacheri and 5 village for 40,000 chakras. On 14.2.1739 the French took possession of Karaikal town, the fort of Karukalacheri and 8 dependent villages. The King of Thanjavur raised the price for the town of Karaikal and the fort of Karukalacheri to 50,000 chakras. The villages so received were Keelaiyur, Melaiyur, Puduthurai, Kovilpathu and Thirumalairayanpattinam. Subsequently 2 villages were ceded to the French. By a treaty signed on 12.1.1750 Pratap Singh who succeeded the throne ceded to the French 81 villages around Karaikal and cancelled the annual rent of 2000 pagodas payable for the villages. This was all the territory the French possessed around Thanjavur when they surrendered to the British in 1761. The territory then passed twice to the British control before it was finally handed over to the French in 1816/1817 under the Treaty of Paris, 1814. The formation of Karaikal national congress on 13.6.1947 and Students Congress on 31.1.1947 symbolised the first concrete expression of popular desire in Karaikal for freedom from French rule. The French ruled this district till 31st October, 1954 on which date the French flag flying a top the government house at Karaikal was lowered with due military honours before a large gathering of officials and non-officials. Thus the de facto transfer of power took place on 1st November 1954 followed by de jure transfer on 16th August 1962.