FRENCH IN INDIA
Q1. What is the time line of French footing and progress in India?
1664 - French East India Company formed by Colbert.
1668 - Established a factory at Surat, Gujarat by Francois Caron.
1669 - Established a factory at Machilipatnam, Andhra Pradesh by Marcar
1673 - Established Chandernagore in West Bengal with the permission of the then Governor of Bengal Nawab Shaishta Khan.
1674 Founded Puducherry (Pondicherry) acquiring it from the Bijapur Sultan and it became the first full settlement of the French, with Francois Martin as its first Governor. Excepting for a brief period between 1693-1699, when Puducherry was lost to the Dutch, it remained under French till India's independence. French regained this territory from the Dutch by the "Treaty of Ryswick, 1699". Puducherry was the capital of the French India.
Q2. Give a brief account of French territorial hold?
By around mid 18th century, the French were able to gain control of the territories from Hyderabad to Cape Comorin. However, they lost a majority of the territories by the Battle of Wandiwash (Vandavasi now) in 1760 and a full fledged siege over Puducherry left a serious devastation of the city in 1761 that lasted until 1765.
Puducherry was returned to the French in 1765 through a Peace Treaty between the French and the British. However, between 1765 and 1816 Puducherry changed hands with both and finally in 1816, after the Napoleonic Wars ended, Puducherry came back to the French Control and remained so till independence.
Q3. Who was the first Governor of French India?
Francois Martin 1674.
Q4. Who was the most famous French Governor of French India?
Joseph Francois Duplex - 1742-1754 - Puducherry got developed to what it is today during his period.
Q5. Who was the last Governor of the French India?
Charles Francois Marie Baron - upto 20th August 1947.
Q6. What were the territories held by the French at the time of independence and when did they join India?
1. The trading posts at Machilipatnam, Kozikode and Surat joined India in October 1947.
2. Chandernagore (now Chandernagar) joined in May 1950 and with West Bengal in 1955.
3. Puducherry, Yanam, Mahe, Karaikkal became Union Territories of India from 1.11.1954. France ratified the annexation in 1963.
4. Yanam (in 1725, in Andhra Pradesh), Mahe (in 1725 , Malabar Dt. Kerala) Karaikkal (in 1739 in Tamilnadu) were acquired/captured by the French between 1720 - 1742 when Lenoir and Dumas were the Governors. These territories joined India upon independence in November 1954.