IAS Gyan

Daily News Analysis


19th January, 2023 Culture

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Context: Nagarathars, members of a trader community, from various parts of the globe thronged Nattarsankottai for the Sevvai Pongal.



  • Nagarathar is a Chettiar community in Shaivism that originated in Naganadu a small island in Sri Lanka
  • Later they were brought by Pallavas to Kanchi and they lived there for more than 1000 years.
  • But they couldn’t live a satisfying life due to the king's behavior so they migrated to Kaveripoompattinam under the Chola kingdom.
  • in Kaveripoompattinam, the chola kings gave lots of benefits to the Nangarhar and nagarthars increased the economy of the Chola and helped them a lot during the war times financially.
  • Due to some cruel behavior of Cholas and natural calamities, nagarthars migrated to the Pandya kingdom.
  • Pandyas offer a dry land area for the nagrathar community that is the present Chettinad.
  • Nagarathars are a prominent mercantile Tamil vanigar caste in Tamil Nadu, South India.
  • They are a community with very rich cultural heritage, known for their philanthropy; building temples and schools, and maintaining them throughout India and Asia.
  • Chettiars are extremely intelligent and have strong values.
  • They were able to travel to foreign countries by boat, train, and by foot and set up businesses.
  • They have built huge mansions, many with gorgeous tiles imported from Italy in the late 1800s and early 1900s.
  • Even today, Nagarathars have formed Sangams in different countries where they meet, preserve their culture, the Tamil Language.
  • Now Nagarathars live in 52 countries.