Middle Kingdoms of India, Part 22


Hathigumpha, Udayagiri Hills - Bhubaneswar, Orissa

May 04, 2015 — CANADA (SUN) — A serial presentation of India's great history, religious movements and temple architecture.

The Mahameghavahana dynasty

'The Mahameghavahana dynasty (c. 250 B.C. to 400 A.D.) was an ancient ruling dynasty of Kalinga who came to power after the decline of the Mauryan Empire. The third ruler of the dynasty, Kharavela, conquered much of India in a series of campaigns at the beginning of the common era (A.D.). [34]

Kaḷingan military might was reinstated by Khāravēḷa. Under his generalship, the Kaḷinga state had a formidable maritime reach with trade routes linking it to what was then Simhala (Sri Lanka), Burma (Myanmar), Siam (Thailand), Vietnam, Kamboja (Cambodia), Borneo, Bali, Samudra (Sumatra) and Jabadwipa (Java). Even today, Indians are referred to as Keling in Malaysia because of this.[35]

Khāravēḷa led many successful campaigns against the states of Magadha, Anga, Satavahanas and the South Indian regions of the Pandyan Empire (modern Andhra Pradesh), expanding Kaḷinga as far as the Ganges and the Kaveri.

Although religiously tolerant, king Khāravēḷa patronised Jainism [36][37] and was responsible for the propagation of Jainism in the Indian Subcontinent. The main source of information about Khāraveḷa (Khārabeḷa) is his famous seventeen line rock-cut Hātigumphā inscription in a cave in the Udayagiri hills near Bhubaneswar, Odisha. According to the Hathigumpha inscription, he attacked Rajagriha in Magadha, thus inducing the Indo-Greek king Demetrius to retreat to Mathura.[38]

Hathigumpha inscription of King Khāravela at Udayagiri Hills


[34] Agrawal, Sadananda (2000): Śrī Khāravela, Sri Digambar Jain Samaj, Cuttack, Odisha
[35] http://www.visvacomplex.com/Keling_English_Version.html
[36] "Maharaja Kharavela". Retrieved 2012-01-16
[37] "Maharaja Kharavela's Family". Retrieved 2012-01-16
[38] Shashi Kant (2000): The Hathigumpha Inscription of Kharavela and the Bhabru Edict of Ashoka, D K Printworld Pvt. Ltd.


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