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(chĕn`nī), formerly


(mədrăs`, mədräs`), city (1991 pop. 5,421,985), capital of Tamil NaduTamil Nadu
, formerly Madras
, state (2001 provisional pop. 62,110,839), 50,180 sq mi (129,966 sq km), SE India, on the Bay of Bengal. The capital is Chennai (formerly Madras).
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 state, SE India, on the Bay of Bengal. A commercial, railway, and manufacturing center, Chennai has large textile mills, chemical plants, and tanneries and is the main center of India's automobile industry. Providing offshore and back-office services to foreign corporations is also an important industry. Together with docks and warehouses, its harbor provides modern transportation linkages to peninsular India. A cultural center, the city is the seat of the Univ. of Madras (1857), institutes of dance and music, and a number of museums. There are many large public buildings; a famous shore drive, the Marina; and Guindy National Park. Near Chennai is Mt. St. Thomas, the traditional site of the martyrdom (A.D. 68) of St. ThomasThomas, Saint,
one of the Twelve Apostles, called Didymus. According to John, he refused to believe in the resurrection until he saw Jesus' wounds; hence the expression "doubting Thomas." John 11.16; 14.5; 20.24–29; 21.2.
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, the apostle. He is said to be buried in Chennai at the Cathedral of St. Thomé.

The city, as Madras, became an important British trading center, growing largely around Fort St. George, a British outpost (1645) at the site of an earlier British settlement (1639) that became the seat of the British East India Company until 1773 and the capital of the Madras presidency (1653). The French captured Madras in 1746, but the British recovered it two years later. The presidency became a province (1937) and, with Indian independence, a state (1950), renamed Tamil Nadu in 1969. In 1996 the city was renamed Chennai, after Chennapatnam, a precolonial village near the original British outpost. Coastal areas of the city were hit by the Dec., 2004, Indian Ocean tsunami.

References in periodicals archive ?
In addition, Chennai customers can connect through Delhi to many additional destinations including Srinagar, Jammu, Amritsar, Chandigarh, Lucknow, Varanasi, Bagdogra, and Guwahati.
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On arrival to Chennai, the passenger disembarked the aircraft which allowed the flight to continue to Chennai.
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Ravikumar, Deputy General Manager, PBEL City Chennai said that, "We are glad to host Chennai Rhinos for their practice session at our newly constructed cricket ground at PBEL City Chennai.
The new international terminal, which is located in the existing airport, features all new facilities including check-in desks, duty-free shops, food and beverage outlets and lounges, providing an enhanced and more seamless experience for Gulf Air's customers travelling to and from Chennai.
Chennai, who have already make it to the Qualifiers, will look for a psychological edge against Rajasthan as they beat the hosts in their home match, and a win here would pose pressure on Rahul Dravid's team.
Ahmed from Chennai of Team TVS Racing by 24 points in the Group D unmodified class upto 130cc bikes.
A senior Southern Railway official told IANS in Chennai: "A train carrying the relatives of those travelling in the S-11 coach of the Tamil Nadu Express will leave Chennai Central at 9.
The FMCG company's CMD C K Ranganathan had told TOI that the inability to attract the right talent to Chennai had begun affecting the company's growth.
The airline will increase regularity of its Kuala Lumpur to Chennai, India service by adding four new flights commencing January 21, 2011.