Pondicherry State (French: État de Pondichéry; Tamil: பாண்டிச்சேரி மாநில, Pāṇṭiccēri Mānila) is a state of India in the British Empire formed out of the eight enclaves of former French India and named after the largest, Pondicherry. It is also known as "The French Riviera of the East" (La Côte d'Azur de l'Est).
France first established a presence in India in 1668. Over the next 150 years, their possessions frequently shifted and were often held by the British. After the Napoleonic Wars in 1816, Pondicherry, Chandernagore, Karaikal, Yanaon, and Mahé were returned to French control, along with lodges in Masulipatnam, Calicut, and Surat. An elective council for the French Establishments in India was created on January 25, 1871. After World War II, India's self-government gave impetus for the French establishments to unite with the rest of India. An election was held in 1954, and ratified by the French and British governments in 1962, whereupon Pondicherry state was created.