A separate ethnic group different to the Malays, Moors, Tamils, Burghers and a majority of Sinhalese, Colombo Chetties form an integral part of Sri Lankan Society. Today, this small educated and cultured community consist around 150 000 individuals living in the Western and North Western Provinces of the Country.

The derivation of the name “Chetty “ is taken from the word “Setthi”, “Situ” or “Etti” meaning wealthy merchant, trader or banker bearing that the Chetties are descendants of a community of traders. The early ancestors of this community are said to have engaged in trade with Ceylon which later resulted in the migration the Island. The Chetty Community has lived for several centuries in the Island from the time of the Sinhalese Kings.

The Colombo Chetty Community is peaceful and a much respected ethnic group that has maintained healthy and friendly relations with all communities in Sri Lanka

The term ‘Chetty’ is interpreted as ‘Setti’ in Pali, ‘Hetti’ or ‘Situ’ in Sinhalese, ‘Etti’ in Tamil. Therefore, any reference to ‘Setti’ or ‘Sittu’ would mean Chetty. This is important because in all historical records this Community is referred to as ‘Setti’ or ‘Situ’.