(1) Paithan / Pratishthana
It is located in Aurangabad district of Maharashtra on Godavari River. It was the capital of the Satavahanas that ruled from 2nd century BC to 2nd century AD. It is mentioned in the famous 1st century AD Greek book, Periplus of Erythrian Sea and in Ashokan Rock Edict.
Paithan was important emporium of trade and commerce with links connecting to other parts of India the world.
Paithan was also the home of the great Maharashtrian saint Eknath.
The town is famous today for its sarees — the Paithani silk saris.
- In Munger district, Bihar
- Stone age settlements: Mesolithic
(3) Pallavaram (Just near Chennai)
- Kanchipuram district
- First a stone implement from the Paleolithic Age inside a ballast pit was found. Since then, a number of stone age artifacts have been uncovered.
- In Karnataka
- Bone axe made from cattle scapulae finished by grinding at the worked edge. Ash mound has also been found.
- Neolithic settlement has been found in South India which is contemporary with the Early Indus valley Civilization like In Karnataka such as Pikkalilal, Utnur, Kupgal, Kodekal, Pallavoy. Ash mounds have been found and they have given the evidence that cattle were herded there.
Palitana is associated with Jain legends and history. Adinath, the first of the Jain tirthankaras, is said to have meditated on the Shatrunjaya hill, where the Palitana temples were later constructed.
This site on Shatrunjaya hill is considered sacred by Jains and have hundreds of temples. There are approximately 863 marble-carved temples on the hills. It is said that 23 of 24 Jain Tirthankaras, except Neminatha, sanctified the hill by their visits. The main temple is dedicated to Rishabha, the first Tirthankara; it is the holiest shrine for the Svetambara Murtipujaka sect. Digambara Jains have only one temple here.
(6) Panchwati (Location near Nasik Part N)
- Panchavati has significant religious significance for Hindus with a temple complex on the bend of the Godavari river, which includes Kalaram Temple. It is a pilgrimage site, with the Kumbh Mela, the largest peaceful gathering in the world – involving over 100 million people in 2013, taking place here once every twelve years in rotation with Haridwar, Allahabad, and Ujjain.
- In the epic Ramayana, Panchavati was the place in the forest of Dandakaranya (Danda Kingdom), where Rama built his home along with his wife Sita and brother Lakshman during their period of exile in the wilderness.The entire Aranya Kanda (book of the forest) of Ramayana is set in Panchavati.
- Pandharpur is a pilgrimage city on the banks of Bhima river in Solapur district. Vithoba, Viththal, Pandurang, and Pandharinath are the popular alternate names of the deity, who is regarded in Hinduism as a form of Lord Krishna. Krishna is considered as an incarnation of Lord Vishnu. Rakhumai/Rukmini is Viththal’s consort in the temple.
- The worship of Vitthal in the Pandharpur temple is based mainly on the contents of the Puranas, and the contributions of the Vaishnav saints of Maharashtra and Karnataka during the 13th through the 17th centuries. Some of these saints are Gnyaneshwar, Namdev, Gora Kumbhar, Chokhamela, Eknath, Tukaram, Purandara Dasa, Vijaya Dasa, Gopala Dasa, and Jagannatha Dasa.
Pandua is a ruined historic city in the Malda district of West Bengal. The city was probably founded by Samsuddin Firuz Shah. In 1339, Alauddin Ali Shah transferred his capital from Lakhnauti to Pandua. Later, Haji Shamsuddin Iliyas Shah, the first independent Sultan of Bengal, made the city the capital of his Bengal Sultanate. However in 1453, the capital was transferred back to Gaur by Nasiruddin Mahmud Shah.
The monuments of Pandua were built in the Bengal provincial style of the Indo-Islamic architecture. Jami Mosque or the Adina Mosque was the finest built by Sikandar Shah in 1369. Other important monuments of this city are the Eklakhi mausoleum and the Qutb Shahi Mosque.
- Pandu Rajar Dhibi is an archaeological site in Bardhaman district.It is located near the southern bank of Ajay River near Rajpotdanga and Panduk villages.
- While Pandu Rajar Dhibi was the first Chalcolithic site in W.B. to be discovered, a number of other sites have been discovered in an area spread over the districts of Birbhum, Bardhaman, Bankura and Midnapore, and interspersed by rivers Brahmani, Mayurakshi, Kopai, Ajay, Kunur, Damodar, Dwarakesvar, Shilabati, and Rupnarayan.
- There were two main periods – the Chalcolithic period around 1600 BC – 750 BC, and the Iron Age.
- The excavations at Pandu Rajar Dhibi reveal the non-Aryan origin of the non-Brahmin Bengalis. The Copper Age civilisation in eastern India had links with similar civilisation of central India and Rajasthan. Agriculture and trade were the mainstays of their economy. It has been suggested that Pandu Rajar Dhibi represents the ruins of a trading township. The people carried out trade not only with interior parts of India but also distant lands such as the Mediterranean lands.
Panipat is in Haryana. The First Battle of Panipat was fought on 21 April 1526 between Ibrahim Lodhi, the Afghan Sultan of Delhi, and Babur, who later established Mughal rule in Northern Indian subcontinent.
The Second Battle of Panipat was fought on 5 November 1556 between the forces of Akbar and Samrat Hem Chandra Vikramaditya, also known as Hemu, a King of North India.
The Third Battle of Panipat was fought in 1761 between the Maratha Empire and the Afghan invaders, Ahmad Shah Abdali.
Panipat is also famous for Kabuli Bagh Mosque built by Babur.
(11) Panjim (or Goa)
Between the 2nd century BC and the 6th century AD, Goa was ruled by the Bhojas of Goa. The rule later passed to the Chalukyas of Badami between 6th and 8th century and then under the between 8th and 10th century. From 8th to 10th century, the Southern Silharas of Konkan ruled Goa as the feudatories of the Chalukyas and the Rashtrakutas. Over the next few centuries, Goa was successively ruled by the Kadambas as the feudatories of the Chalukyas of Kalyani. They patronised Jainism in Goa.
In 1312, Goa came under the governance of the Delhi Sultanate. By 1370 it was forced to surrender it to Harihara I of the Vijayanagara Empire. Later it was appropriated by the Bahmani sultans of Gulbarga. After that dynasty crumbled, the area fell into the hands of the Adil Shahis of Bijapur.
In 1510, the Portuguese catured Goa by defeated the ruling Bijapur sultan Yousuf Adil Shah. They set up a permanent settlement in Velha Goa (or Old Goa). Portuguese made many faus churches and buildings here. In 1843 the Portuguese moved the capital to Panjim from Velha Goa.
In 1962, Goa was taken over by India from the Portuguese.
(12) Pataliputra / Patna / Pataligram / Palibothra / Kusumpur / Pushpapura / Azimabad
Recorded history of the city begins in the year 5th century BCE when Ajatashatru, the king of Magadh, wanted to shift his capital from the hilly Rajgriha to a more strategically located place to combat the Lichivis of Vaishali. He chose a site on the bank of the Ganges and fortified the area which developed into Pataliputra. Situated at the confluence of the Ganges, Gandhaka and Son rivers, Pataliputra formed a “water fort, or jaldurga”. Firstly Ajatasatru built a small fort (Pataligrama). Udayin, son of Ajatasatru finally established Pataliputra as the capital of Magadha.
Its position helped it dominate the riverine trade of the Indo-Gangetic plains during Magadha’s early imperial period. It was a great centre of trade and commerce and attracted merchants and intellectuals, such as the famed Chanakya, from all over India.
Excavations around Patna revealed evidence of large fortification walls, including wooden trusses. Its central strategic location in north central India led rulers of successive dynasties to base their administrative capital here, from the Nandas, Mauryans, Sungas, Guptas and Palas.
Pataliputra reached the pinnacle of prosperity when it was the capital of the Maurya. The city prospered under the Mauryas and a Greek ambassador, Megasthenes, resided there and left a detailed account of its splendour. The city became a flourishing Buddhist and Jain centre. Second Buddhist council in the reign of Mauryan Emperor Ashoka and first Jain council were held here.
It remained the capital of the Gupta dynasty (3rd–6th centuries) and the Pala Dynasty (8th-12th centuries). The city was largely in ruins when visited by Chinese Pilgrim Xuanzang in 7th century.
Afterwards, Sher Shah Suri made Pataliputra his capital and changed the name to modern Patna.
- Nevasa culture which florished in maharashtra during stone age.
- Patne is in Kolhapur district. Large amount of ostrich egg shells found here gives evidence that Ostriches lived in India during Palaeolithic period.
It is situated near Badami in the Bijapur district of Karnataka. The Chalukyas of Badami constructed rock cut and structural temples at Pattadakal around the 7th century AD. The most famous temple is Virupaksha temple.
There are ten temples at Pattadakal, including Jain sanctuary. Some temples show Northern style while other Southern Style of architecture. Papanatha temple is the fusion of both styles.
Pattadakal continued to be an important centre under the Rashtrakutas and the Kalyani Chalukyas.
Virupaksha temple is the largest and grandest of all temples in Pattadakal built in 8th century, built by queen Lokamahadevi (Trilokyamahadevi) in 745 to commemorate her husband’s victory (Vikramaditya II) over the Pallavas of Kanchi.
The Virupaksha temple itself is an exact replica of the Kailasa temple at Kanchi.
There are numerous Kannada inscriptions at Pattadakal.
(15) Pavapuri / Pawapuri / Pava
- Pawapuri is a holy site for Jains located in the Nalanda district in Bihar. It is located about thirty-eight kilometers from Rajgir
- During ancient times about 2600 year ago, Pawapuri was one of twin capital of Mall Mahajanpad which later became the part of Magadha Kingdom and was called “Madyama Pawa” or “Apawapuri”, Ajatshatru, who was one of the greatest disciples of Lord Mahavira was the King of Magadh during the lifetime of Mahavir. During the reign of Ajatshatru, Hastipal was the King of Pawapuri. When Lord Mahavira came to Pawapuri.
- Around 5th Century BCE, Mahavira, the last of the twenty four Tirthankara achieved Moksha or Nirvana. He was cremated at Pawapuri, also known as Apapuri (the sinless town). Now, an exquisite marble temple in the middle of a lotus pond, the Jalmandir, stands magnificently on a rectangular island. Another Jain temple, called Samosharan is located here, where the Lord Mahavira delivered his last teaching.
- In Sehore district of MP.
- New inscription of Ashoka has been found here which talks about proclaimation during dharmayatra of Ashoka
It is located in West Godavari district of Andhra Pradesh. This region was controlled at different points in history by the Hoysalas, Chalukyas, Vijayanagar, Nawabs, Maratha chieftain Murari Rao, Tipu Sultan, Nizam and British rule after it was ceded to the British by the Nizam of Hyderabad.
It was a melting pot of different religions but the town and fort were established by early Hoysala kings, who were practitioners of Jainism. Because of its ancient Jain history and presence of many temples it is revered places for Jains.
Penugonda is treasure house of many temples. The famous Sri Vasavi Kanyaka Parameswari temple is located here.
The famous Babaiah Dargah is located here. Hazrath Baba Fakruddin was a great Sufi Saint of 12th century. He is called Babaiah by the local people.
A famous medieval fort is also located in Penukonda.
(18) Peshawar / Purushapura
Purushapura is modern Peshawar in NWF province of Pakistan. It was the capital pf the Kushana ruler Kanishka in ancient time (2nd century AD). Here, Buddhist Chaitya was constructed by Kushanas. Many sculptures of the Kushana period is found here. It was also a great trade centre in ancient times linking China, Central Asia, India and West Aian countries. It lied on the old silk route.
Purushapura was a great centre of Buddhist learning. Kanishka built a giant stupa, to house the Buddhist relics. The earliest account of the famous building was documented by Faxian, the Chinese Buddhist pilgrim, who visited the structure in 4th century AD. It was still in existence at the time of another Chinese pilgrim Xuanzang’s visit in 634 AD.
- Piklihal is a village near Mudgal in Raichur district.
- Piklihal is a neolithic period site
- Piprahwa is a village near Birdpur in Siddharthnagar district of Uttar Pradesh.
- Some scholars have suggested that modern-day Piprahwa was the site of the ancient city of Kapilavastu, the capital of the Shakya kingdom, where Siddhartha Gautama spent the first 29 years of his life. Others suggest that the original site of Kapilavastu is located 16 kilometres to the northwest, at Tilaurakot, in what is currently Kapilvastu District in Nepal.
- A buried stupa was discovered, a large stone coffer which contained five small vases containing ashes and jewels. On one of the vases was an inscription which was translated at the time to mean “This relic-shrine of divine Buddha (is the donation) of the Sakya-Sukiti brothers, associated with their sisters, sons, and wives”, implying that the vase was a reliquary containing the ashes of Gautama Buddha.
It is located on eastern coast of India. It was an ancient port in Sangam Age during early Christian era and Romans traded with India through this port which was called Poduca (Arikamedu). It had bead making facility and trading with Roman traders took place. Various Roman artifacts, such as a large number of amphorae bearing the mark of Roman pottery have been found at the site, supporting the view on an ancient trade with Rome. Roman lamps, glassware and gems have also been found at the site. A rich haul of Roman golden coins proves that India got a lot of gold in return of her export.
The area was part of the Pallava Kingdom of Kanchipuram in the 4th century. The Cholas of Thanjavur from the 10th to 13th centuries, the Pandya Kingdom in the 13th century. The Vijayanagar Empire took control of almost all the South of India in the 14th century and lasted until 1638, to be supplanted by the Sultan of Bijapur. The French acquired Puducherry in 1674 and held control until 1954.
(23) Puhar / Poompuhar / Kaveripattinam
Puhar is in Nagapattinam district of Tamilnadu. It was an important sea port (now lost port) during the Sangam age and a great centre of trade. It also city served as the capital of the early Chola kings.
Puhar is located near the end point north bank of the Kaveri River, aside the sea coast. Evidence of foreign trade through the port is found here.
Puhar is mentioned in the Periplus of Ereythrean Sea. Puhar is also mentioned in Silapathikaram, a literature book of Sangam Age. It also menions general plan of Puhar.
The ancient city of Puhar was destroyed by the sea around 300 BC. This could have been the effects of sediment erosion and periodic tsunamis.
Ancient Pottery dating back to the 4th century BCE have been discovered from Puhar.
It is in Maharashtra. Copper plates dated 9th century AD show that by the 8th century an agricultural settlement known as Punnaka existed where Pune is today. The plates indicate that this region was ruled by the Rashtrakuta dynasty. The Pataleshwar rock-cut temple complex was built during this era.
Pune was ruled by the Ahmadnagar Sultanate until it was annexed by the Mughals in the 17th century. In 1595, Maloji Raje Bhosale was appointed the jagirdar of Pune by the Mughal Empire whose grandson, Shivaji founded Maratha Kingdom.
Chhatrapati Shahu, grandson of Shivaji, realized the importance of Pune and asked most of the Maratha army to be stationed in Pune because of its central location. He also asked his army to report to the Peshwa at Pune location for fast expedition, finances rather than relying on Satara, the seat of the Chhatrapati.
In 1720, Baji Rao I was appointed Peshwa of the Maratha Empire by Chhatrapati Shahu of Satara. He selected Pune as his base and started construction of Shaniwar Wada, ushering in the era of Peshwa control of the city. The patronage of the Maratha Peshwas resulted in the construction of many temples and bridges in the city.
British captured Pune after defeating Marathas.
(25) Purandar / Purandhar
Purandar Fort is about is 50 km southeast of Pune. It is related to the rising of Shivaji against the Adil Shahi Sultanate of Bijapur and the Mughals.
The earliest mention of Purandar is in the Yadava era (11th century). Purandar fell into the hands of Muslim invaders who further fortified it in 14th century.
During the early rule of the Bijapur and Ahmednagar kings, Purandar was among the forts directly under Government. In 1596, when Bahudar Shah of Ahmednagar sultanate granted Maloji Bhosale (grandfather of Shivaji) Pune, the fort of Purandar was included as well.
The Treaty of Purandar was signed on June 11, 1665, between Jai Singh I, who was commander of Aurangzeb, and Shivaji. Shivaji was forced to sign the agreement after Jai Singh besieged Purandar fort. This truce did not last long as Shivaji revolted against Aurangzeb and recaptured Purandar only five years later in 1670. Thereafter, Shivaji spent prolonged periods of time here.
Under the Peshwas, Purandar was a stronghold to which they retreated whenever Pune, their capital, was under attack.
- Porkulam is a village in Thrissur district in Kerala. Here human remains, decorated pearls, iron tools and earthen pots (very similar to those found at Thakshasila) were found which dates back more than 2400 years. It is Megalithic site.
- The earliest vestiges of constructions in Kerala belong to this period dated between 3000 B.C. to 300 B.C. They can be grouped into two types – tomb cells and megaliths. The rock cut tomb cells are generally located in the laterite zones of central Kerala, for example at Porkalam.
(27) Pragyotishpur / Pragyotishpur (See Kamrupa in Part K)
(28) Pulicat / Pazhaverkadu
- Pulicat is a historic seashore town in Thiruvallur District, of Tamil Nadu.The Portuguese established a trading post in Pulicat in 1502 with the help of the Vijayanagar rulers. They built a fort there and held this fort until 1609 when they were defeated by the Dutch.
- Between 1621 and 1665, slave ships were deployed by the Dutch to export Indians captured on the Coromandel coast and transported from Pulicat to be sold as slaves to Dutch plantations in Batavia.
- Pulicat was till 1690 the capital of Dutch Coromandel. It repeatedly changed possession, until finally occupied by the British in 1825. It became part of the Madras Presidency
It is situated in the coastal area of Odissa located 60 kilometres south of the Bhubaneswar.
Shankaracharya founded his Eastern Dhan (Jagannath Peeth) at Puri.
Puri is also known as Jagannath Puri after the Jagannath Temple located in the city. According to copper plates of the Ganga dynasty, the construction Jagannath temple was initiated by the ruler of Kalinga, Anantavarman Chodaganga Dev during his reign in 11th century.
The temple has four distinct sectional structures, namely –
- Deula, Vimana or Garba griha (Sanctum sanctorum) where the triad deities are lodged on the ratnavedi (Throne of Pearls). It was in Rekha Deula style.
- Mukhashala (Frontal porch).
- Natamandapa or Jagamohan (Audience Hall/Dancing Hall).
- Bhoga Mandapa (Offerings Hall)
- Pushkar is a town in the Ajmer district one of the five sacred dhams (pilgrimage site) for Hindus. It lies on the shore of Pushkar Lake. Pushkar has many temples. The most famous among all is the Brahma Temple built during the 14th century CE. Very few temples to Lord Brahma exist anywhere in the world.
- Pushkar is also famous for its annual fair (Pushkar Camel Fair).
- Pushkalavati is an ancient site near Peshawar (in Charsadda district, Pakistan in Peshawar valley in the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa) was the capital of ancient kingdom Gandhara from the 6th century BC, when it became an Achaemenid local capital of Gandhara satrapy, to 2nd century AD.
- The ruins of Pushkalavati consist of many stupas and sites of two old cities.
- The city of Pushkalavati was situated at the confluence of Swat and Kabul rivers. Three different branches of Kabul river meet there. That specific place is still called Prang and considered sacred. A grand graveyard is situated to the north of Prang where the local people bring their dead for burial. This graveyard is considered to be among the largest graveyards in the world.