Karnal is a city lies along the west bank of the Yamuna River, is said to be derived from that of Karna, a warrior in the ancient epic poem the Mahabharata and the town's legendary founder. It was later annexed by the Raja of Jind in 1763 AD and was taken from him by George Thomas in 1797. The British established a cantonment in 1811 AD but abandoned it after 30 years due to the outbreak of malaria.

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