Nagardhan excavations: Why are findings important to understand Vakataka dynasty

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News: Recent excavations at Nagardhan near Nagpur, have provided concrete evidence on the life, religious affiliations and trade practices of the Vakataka dynasty.

Facts:

About Nagardhan

  • It is a large village in Nagpur district and hosts the Nagardhan fort.
  • The Nagardhan fort was constructed during the Gond Raja period and later renovated and re-used by the Bhosales of Nagpur during the late 18th and 19th centuries.

Recent Excavation:

First-time clay sealings have been excavated:

  •  It belongs to the period when Prabhavatigupta was the queen of the Vakataka dynasty.
  • It bears her name in the Brahmi script, along with the depiction of a conch- a sign of the Vaishnava affiliation
  • These sealings could have been used as an official royal permission issued for trade with Iran and beyond through the Mediterranean Sea.

Additional Information:

Vakataka dynasty

  • a Brahminical dynasty
  • Reign: c. 250 CE – c. 500 CE
  • Territorial Extent: southern edges of Malwa and Gujarat in the north to the Tungabhadra River in the south, the Arabian Sea in the west to the edges of Chhattisgarh in the east.
  • Founder: Vindhyashakti
  • The rock-cut Buddhist viharas and chaityas of Ajanta Caves (were built under the patronage of Vakataka emperor, Harishena.