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Rani Velu Nachiyar Rani
Queen of Sivagangai
Princess of Ramanathapuram
Sivagangai Aranmanai.jpg
Statue of Rani Velu Nachiyar at the historic palace and her residence, Sivagangai
Reign c. 1760-c. 1790[citation needed]
Successor British Rule
Father Chellamuthu Sethupathy
Mother Muthathal Nachiyar
Born 3 January 17301
Sivaganga, Tamil Nadu, India
Died c. 1790
Sivaganga, Tamil Nadu, India
Religion Hinduism

Rani Velu Nachiyar (Tamil: இராணி வேலு நாச்சியார்) was an 18th-century Indian queen from Sivaganga. Rani Velu Nachiyar was the first queen to fight against the British in India, even preceding the famous Rani Laxmibai of Jhansi.[1]

Her life[edit]

Velu Nachiyar

She was the princess of Ramanathapuram and the daughter of Chellamuthu Sethupathy. She married the king of Siva Gangai and they had a daughter - Vellachi Nachiar. When her husband Muthuvaduganathaperiya Udaiyathevar was killed, she was drawn into battle. Her husband and his second wife were killed by a few British soldiers and the son of the Nawab of Arcot. She escaped with her daughter, lived under the protection of Hyder Ali at Virupachi near Dindigul for eight years.[2] During this period she formed an army and sought an alliance with Gopala Nayaker and Hyder Ali with the aim of attacking the British. In 1780 Rani Velu Nachiyar fought the British and won the battle. When Velu Nachiyar finds the place where the British stock their ammunition, she builds the first human bomb. A faithful follower, Kuyili douses herself in oil, lights herself and walks into the storehouse.[3] Rani Velu Nachiyar formed a woman's army named “udaiyaal” in honour of her adopted daughter — Udaiyaal, who died detonating a British arsenal. Nachiar was one of the few rulers who regained her kingdom and ruled it for 10 more years.[4]

Velu Nachiyar is the first queen who fought for the freedom against British in India and gave them a free run for their life. The first revolutionary who opposed the rule of British in Tamil Nadu even before the Sepoy mutiny which is considered as the first war against the British rule in India. The Queen Velu Nachiar granted powers to Marudu brothers to administer the country in 1780. Velu Nachiar died a few years later, but the exact date of her death is not known (it was about 1790). Marudu brothers are the sons of Udayar Servai alias Mookiah Palaniappan Servai and Anandayer alias Ponnathal.[5]

On 31-December-2008, a commemorative postage stamp on her was released.[6]


  1. ^ The Hindu - 10-Aug-2010
  2. ^ "Uphill, for history’s sake". The Hindu (India). 24 December 2007. 
  3. ^ "Of woman power and Tamizh glory". IBN Live (Chennai, India). 14 June 2011. 
  4. ^ The Hindu - 14-Aug-2010
  5. ^ "History-Sivaganga district". Sivaganga dist. - Tamilnadu govt., India. Retrieved 24 November 2011. 
  6. ^ "India Post - Stamps 2008". Postal department, Government of India. 

See also[edit]

Original courtesy of Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Velu_Nachiyar — Please support Wikipedia.
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24 news items

Business Standard
Sat, 19 Jul 2014 08:30:32 -0700

Chief Minister Jayalalithaa inaugurated a memorial of Rani Velu Nachiyar and a monument of Veerathai Kuili at Soorakulam village in Sivaganga district through video conferenceing. While the Rani Velu Nachiar memorial was built at a cost of Rs 60 lakh ...
The Hindu
Fri, 02 Nov 2012 18:52:30 -0700

The government will build a memorial for freedom fighter and queen of Sivaganga, Velu Nachiyar, Chief Minister Jayalalithaa told the Assembly on Friday. She made the announcement following a request from CPI deputy leader M. Gunasekaran, ...

The Hindu

The Hindu
Thu, 25 Jul 2013 06:21:45 -0700

At the entrance is a bronze statue of Rani Velu Nachiyar. The walls whisper many a story of battles fought, lost and won by the Marava kings in the 18th Century. The palace was built in 1730 by Sasivarna Thevar, the first king of the Sivagangai kingdom.
The Hindu
Wed, 14 Jan 2015 16:10:12 -0800

... Mr. Vijay reporters here on Tuesday that the Tamils had kept them (Thirukural) hidden from the north for 67 years and he was unearthing it for the north Indians. Mr. Vijay visited the memorial of Veeramangai Velu Nachiyar, the first 18th century ...
Times of India
Sat, 25 Oct 2014 17:12:19 -0700

CHENNAI : They learnt about the origins of Kancheepuram idlis, got acquainted with the legacy of Tamil warriors, including Rani Velu Nachiyar, who fought against the British even before the 1857 revolt, and were awestruck by the intricate temple ...

Times of India

Times of India
Sun, 05 Oct 2014 11:33:45 -0700

Karthika is named after Kuyili, a lieutenant of Velu Nachiyar. She was the freedom fighter who strapped herself with explosives to destroy an English arms godown. Shaam is named Macaulay — he was the one who designed the education system and ...
Sun, 12 Jun 2011 21:38:49 -0700

It is a similar thrill that most would have experienced at the Narada Gana Sabha on Friday evening, for a chapter of Tamil history that has so far remained hidden came to light with the staging of Veerathaai Velu Nachiyar by dance school Bharadhashram.
The Hindu
Sat, 14 Aug 2010 05:17:56 -0700

The battle for independence raged as early as in the 18th century. There were many women especially from the royal houses and aristocrats who led the way and were a source of inspiration. Rani Velu Nachiyar was one such — the first queen of Tamil ...

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