This site is a mirror of the original site, made in 2022 by Heraldry of the World. The original site is unaltered. This mirror functions as an archive to keep the material available on-line.
All rights remain with the late Hubert de Vries, the original site owner.






The National Emblem

Tamil Nadu Police


Back to India




Tamil Nadu is the actual name of Madras State which existed from January 26, 1950 till 1968 and was a part of the former Madras Presidency, dissolved in 1947. Initially, Madras State also included coastal parts of modern-day Andhra Pradesh, northern Kerala (Malabar) and Bellary and Dakshin Kannada districts of Karnataka. It was reduced to its present extent by 1956.

It was subsequently split up along linguistic lines in 1953. Under the States Reorganisation Act, 1956, the States of Kerala and Mysore were carved out of the Madras state. In August 1968, Madras State was renamed as Tamil Nadu.


On the territory of today’s Tamil Nadu there existed the Vijayanagar Empire from 1336 until 1646. On its demise, the country was parcelled out amongst the numerous sultans, polygars and European trading companies.

The Portuguese arrived in 1522, and built a port named São Tomé, after the Christian apostle St. Thomas, who is believed to have preached there between the years 52 and 70. The region then passed into the hands of the Dutch, who established themselves near Pulicat in 1609 and in 1660 in Negapattan. They lost their Indian possessions in 1791.

In 1620 the Danes settled in Tranquebar. They sold their possessions to the British in 1848.

In 1669, the French succeeded in establishing a factory at Masulipatam. They founded the city of Pondicherry in the 18th century and their settlements were only united to India in 1963.


The British East India Company purchased the village of Madraspatnam in 1639 and established the Agency of Fort George which was the origin of Madras Presidency, also known as Madras Province and known officially as Presidency of Fort St. George. This Presidency existed from 1652 until 1655 and from 1684 until 1947. It was under a Governor subordinated to the Governor General of the East India Company, from 1858 of the United Kingdom.





Achievements of the Companies and of the United Kingdom 1639 - 1947


At its greatest extent, Madras Presidency included much of southern India, including the present-day Indian State of Tamil Nadu, the Malabar region of North Kerala, Lakshadweep Islands, the Coastal Andhra and Rayalaseema regions of Andhra Pradesh, Brahmapur and Ganjam districts of Orissa and the Tulu Naduregion as well as Bellary district of Karnataka. The presidency had its capital at Madras (now known as Chennai).





Vatapatrasayi Temple at Srivilliputhur
The emblem of Tamil Nadu shows the Vatapatrasayi Temple at Srivilliputhur,  built in 788 AD.  The history of this temple is said to go a long way back to the Pandya times when, moved by her devotion, Lord Krishna married the poetess-devotee, Andaal.

There are shrines dedicated to Vatapatrasayi (Krishna) and Andaal in this temple, which has one of the most impressive gopurams in the south. Also noteworthy is the temple chariot, which is decorated with carvings from the scriptures. The chariot festival every year attracts a large number of devotees.


Below the temple is the national emblem of India, common for most of the Indian States, and two national flags. The Temple and emblem are surrounded by the name of the state. In base is the motto of India: Satyameva Jayate (Truth alone Triumphs). The emblem was introduced in 1956 and in 1968 adapted to the new name of the state.


The Vatapatrasayi Temple was earlier used as an emblem for Madras Presidency on coins minted in the first years of the 19th century. On these coins the Temple is on a field strewn with stars, surrounded by a strap with the denomination of the coin:




Quarter Pagoda, struck 1819.

On the obverse a ruler or warrior with headdress and sword, rising from two open hands and between what seems to be the scales of a balance. On the reverse a temple-tower between 2 Í 9 five-pointed stars.


The modern national emblem of Tamil Nadu is clearly insipred on the reverse of this coin:



The first emblem showed the Temple and the Emblem surrounded by the legend GOVERNMENT OF MADRAS, the motto in devanagiri script.

The second version has the legend GOVERNMENT OF TAMIL NADU and the motto in english and latin script.

The third and last version is in colour and has name and motto in Tamil script.


ð See illustration in the head of this article.


Tamil Nadu Police


The Police Service of Tamil Nadu uses the national emblem in blue, the legend adapted to the name of the service, the motto in english and latin script.



Back to Main Page



© Hubert de Vries 2009-08-14




Flag Counter In cooperation with Heraldry of the World