Monday, January 9, 2017
This must have been one of the original signs erected when a part of Madras was renamed Raja Annamalaipuram, after the passing away of the first Raja of Chettinad. That title was given to him by the British, in 1929, in addition to the knighthood that was awarded to him six years earlier.
In gazette notification announcing his knighthood, he is addressed as "Diwan Bahadur Sathappa Chettiar Ramanathan Chettiar Muthiah Chettiar Annamalai Chettiar Avargal, Banker, Madras". Even de-duping the Chettiars in that leaves a lot of letters to be written; replacing the "Diwan Bahadur" with "Raja" helped, but even then, it would have been quite a task to find a board indicating the name of this locality had anyone insisted on the full title!