- On left bank of river Indus in Sind province of Pakistan.
- Frontier post during Delhi Sultanate. It remained a subject of constant threat and challenge for Balban, Alauddin Khalji and Md. Bin Tughlaq.
- Mongol seized it in 1245 but were unsuccessful. Again during Alauddin Khalji, Mongol attack was unsuccessful due to brilliant effort of Jafar Khan.
- In 1397, Timur Lung was successful in besieging and plundering it.
(2) Udayagiri Caves (Location near Vidisha in Part V)
The Udayagiri is situated near Besnagar in Vidisha district of Madhya Pradesh. It contains one of the earliest examples of Brahmanical rock-cut caves, dedicated to Shiva and Vishnu. Caves are party rock-cut and partly stone built.
The site has important inscriptions of the Gupta dynasty belonging to the reigns of Chandragupta II (375-415) and Kumaragupta I (415-55). The site at Udayagiri Caves was extensively reworked under the patronage of Chandragupta II.
Famous sculptures in the caves are: Vishnu in his Varaha incarnation, Durga slaying the Buffalo Demon and figure of seated Ganesha, a standing figure of Narasimha (Vishnu in his ‘Lion-man’ incarnation), Narayana (Vishnu resting).
(3) Udayagiri and Khandagiri Caves
- Udayagiri and Khandagiri Caves are partly natural and partly artificial caves of archaeological, historical and religious importance near the city of Bhubaneswar in Odisha. The caves are situated on two adjacent hills, Udayagiri and Khandagiri, mentioned as Kumari Parvat in the Hathigumpha inscription. Udayagiri has 18 caves while Khandagiri has 15 caves. The art of Udayagiri and Khandagiri, being almost contemporaneous with that of Sanchi, has a striking resemblance to it but at the same time retains its own individuality and advanced technique.
- The caves of Udayagiri and Khandagiri, called lena in the inscriptions, were dug out mostly during the reign of Kharavela for the abode of Jaina ascetics. The most important of this group is Ranigumpha in Udayagiri which is a double storeyed monastery.
The famous caves:
In Udayagiri, Hathigumpha (cave 14) and Ganeshagumpha (cave 10) are especially well known due to art treasures of their sculptures and reliefs as well as due to their historical importance. Rani ka Naur (Queen’s Palace cave, cave 1) is also an extensively carved cave.
- Khandagiri offers a fine view back over Bhubaneswar from its summit. The Ananta cave (cave 3) depicts carved figures of women, elephants, athletes, and geese carrying flowers.
Left top clockwise: 1.Sarpagumpha, Udayagiri 2.Baghgumfa, Udayagiri (cave like snake mouth) 3. Cave Monastery in Khandagiri
- The Hathigumpha cave has the Hathigumpha inscription, written by Raja Kharavela, the king of Kalinga, during the 2nd century BCE. The Hathigumpha inscription incised in deep cut Brahmi letters. It faces the rock edicts of Ashoka at Dhauli, situated about six miles away.
- There are some other minor Brahmi inscriptions in the twin hillocks of Udayagiri and Khandagiri.
- Mancapuri cave inscription in Devanagari script
- Sarpagumpha cave inscription in Devanagari script.
- Anantgumpha inscription in Oriya.
Udaipur is situated in Rajasthan. It was founded by Maharana Udai Singh II. In 1567, the Mughal emperor Akbar attacked & laid siege of the venerated fort of Chittor. Udai Singh II shifted the capital of Mewar kingdom from Chittorgarh to Udaipur and continued struggle against Mughals. After his death, the struggle was continued by his brave son Maharana Pratap.
Being a mountainous region and unsuitable for heavily armoured Mughal horses, Udaipur remained safe from Mughal influence in spite of much pressure.
Udaipur remained the capital of the state of Mewar and later became a princely state of British India in 1818. In 1852, Udaipur was absorbed into the British Empire under Lord Dalhouse’s Doctrine of Lapse, but the decision was reversed by Lord Canning.
Ujjain is situated on the river Shipra in Madhya Pradesh. It was called Ujjaini and was the northern capital of Avanti, one of the Mahajanapadas of the 6th century BC. With rise of Magadhan power, it came under the Magadhan Empire. During the reign of Mauryan King Bindusara, Prince Ashoka was the provincial governor of Ujjain.
The Northern black polished ware found their way to the northern Deccan from the Gangetic plains through Ujjain.
Ujjain is associated with a king who called himself Vikramaditya and started the Vikram Samvat Era in 58 BC after defeating the Sakas.
The great ancient Kalidasa was also related to Ujjayini.
During Mughal time, Maharaja Sawai Jai Singh had built the astronomical observatory at Ujjain.
Later on, the Maratha domination of Malwa gave impetus to a cultural impetus in the region. Most of the temples of Ujjain were constructed during this period. In the Maratha period, the art of wood work also developed.
Ujjain finally passed into the hands of the Scindias in 1750. In 1810, Daulat Rao Scindia founded his new capital at Gwalior, which led to a decline in the commercial importance of Ujjain.
Ujjain enjoyed great importance in the battle for the empire and the constant struggle for supremacy. Political importance was compounded by the economic factor of Ujjain being situated on the main artery of trade between the North, the South and the West. This in turn contributed to Ujjain acquiring a cultural splendour of its own.
Ujjain is famous for the Mahakaleshwar Temple. The idol of Mahakaleshwar is also known as Dakshinamurti, facing the south. Mahakaleshwar is among the 12 Jyotirlingas.
Ujjain is also famous for the Kumbh Mela. It is a mass Hindu pilgrimage in which Hindus gather to bathe in a sacred river. Kumbh Mela is held every third year at one of the four places by rotation: Haridwar, Allahabad (Prayaga), Nashik and Ujjain. The rivers at these four places are: the Ganges at Haridwar, the confluence of the Ganges and the Yamuna and the mythical Saraswati at Allahabad, the Godawari at Nashik, and the Shipra at Ujjain.
- Urayur is a neighborhood of Tiruchirapalli. It was the capital of the early Cholas with a fortress and city wall on the southern banks of the river Kaveri. This location is also known as Thirukkozhi, Nikalaapuri, Uranthai, and Kozhiyur. It has a history dating back to before 2 BCE.
- There is definite mention of the Cholas, whose founder was Vijayalaya and their capital in Ashokan inscriptions in Orissa. Inscriptions and rock edicts of Ashoka and the Satavahanas describes them.
- The Imperial Cholas of the 9th century CE later made Tanjavur their capital, and Urayur slowly lost its place in the Chola administration.
It is located in Telngana. It is an important Neolithic Site.
Evidence of ash-mounds, agriculture and herding has been found. There is evidence of cowshed and cattle hoof impressions.
Small amount of ground stone axes, stone blades and a handmade coarse pottery (burnished grey or buffed ware usually plain) found.
- Uttaramerur is located 35 km from Kanchipuram. It was ruled by the Pallavas, the Cholas, the Pandyas, the Sambuvarayars, the Vijayanagara Rayas and the Nayakas. It was Brahmdeya village under Pallava.
- It is known for its temples, built by the Pallavas and Cholas. The town is a home for one of the famous Hindu temples called Utharamerur Sundara Varada Perumal temple. This temple is about 1200 years old and is said to have been constructed under the Pallava king Nandhi Varma Pallava. The main deity in this temple is Lord Sundara Varada Perumal. This temple has numerous inscriptions — those of the great Raja Raja Chola (985-1015 A.D.), his son, Rajendra Chola and the Vijayanagar emperor Krishnadevaraya.
Uttaramerur Inscription and Local Self Governance:
- Stone edicts and carvings found in Uttaramerur have shown clues of local self governance during Chola imperial period. The elections were held by a method called Kudavolai. The edicts are called Uttaramerur Kalvettu after the place. On the walls of the village assembly (grama sabha mandapa), which was a rectangular structure made of granite slabs, are inscriptions saying that the village had an electoral system and a written constitution prescribing the mode of elections. This inscription, dated around 920 A.D. in the reign of Parantaka Chola.
- The Cholas divided their empire into convenient units for administration. Mandalam, kurram, nadu, perur, sirur were some of the local administration units. The provinces were governed by viceroy’s usually senior members of the royal family.
- It is the village administration which is mentioned specially and in great detail by Chola epigraphs. The two Uttaramerur inscriptions of the days of Parantaka I give detailed information regarding the functioning of the sabha, a Brahmin village.
- There were two kinds of autonomous villages known to Chola times. One was the village exclusively inhabited by Brahmins and called a sabha and the other was either mixed village or a completely non-brahmanical village called an Ur.
- Our information relates only to sabhas. It may be pure accident that all the inscriptions speaking of village autonomous institutions happen to be Brahmin villages; it may be that the Brahmins alone were interested in leaving permanent record of their public activities; or it may be that the Ur also was governed exactly like the sabha.
- The details of village administration one gets in the Uttaramerur inscriptions are anticipated in an earlier record found in the Pandyan country and known as the Manur inscription. The Brahmin settlements were called agraharas or chaturvedimangalams and they were ruled by a general assembly called the sabha.
- The Uttaramerur inscriptions record the resolutions of the sabha regarding the constitution of the Variyams or the committees.
- The village was divided into wards known as kudumbus. In a certain case the village consisted of 30 wards. Representatives of kudumbus made up the assembly.
- Qualification: Several qualifications were prescribed for membership of the committees. The qualifications related to ownership of property, residence in the locality, age between 35 and 70, well conversant with business and virtuous and knowledge of the Vedas.
- Disqualification: If one had served previously on a committee during three preceding years it was a disqualification. Officials who had not submitted their accounts (their relatives will also get disqualified), sinners, guilty of incest, theft, taking bribes, who has taken forbidden dishes, were disqualified from office.
- Mode of Election: The names of persons nominated for selection out of the eligible list were written on strips of cudgeon leaves and these were put into a pot from out of which one would be extracted by a young boy.
- This was not election by ballot but selection by lot. The strip was called kudavolai. After the committees were so formed duties were assigned to them. Different committees were called the variyapperumakkal.
- Annual Committee (most learned men), Garden committee, Tank Committee (It will oversee irrigation). The last two committees shall be chosen by showing the Karai (lot). Men of these three committees shall hold office for one year and then retire.
- Panchavara Committees and Gold Committees will be selected by lot from pot method.
- Removal of Persons Found Guilty: When one who is on the committee is found guilty of any offence, he shall be removed. To fill the vacancy, the members of the Committee “for Supervision of Justice” shall convene an assembly, kuri, with the help of the Arbitrator. The committees shall be appointed by drawing pot-tickets.
- Qualification of the Accountant: Any Arbitrator who possesses honest earnings shall write the accounts of the village.
- King’s Order: As long as the moon and the sun endure, committees shall always be appointed by pot-tickets alone. To this effect was the royal letter received and shown to us graciously issued by Lord of Gods, the emperor, the glorious Parakesarivarman.
- Officer Present: Royal officer will be present while making settlements.
- Villager’s Decision: We, the members of the assembly of Uttaramerur Chaturvedimangalam, made this settlement for the prosperity of our village in order that wicked men may perish and the rest may prosper.