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Invasion of Sakas

Filed under: History on 2022-03-06 09:24:50
The Indo-Greek rule in north-western India was destroyed by the Sakas.

The Sakas are also known as the Scythians.

Sakas or Scythians were nomadic tribes originally from central Asia.

In about 165 B.C., Sakas were turned out of their original home by the Yueh-chi.

Yueh-chi later came to be known as Kushanas.

Sakas were also pushed out of their land and came to India.

The departure made by the central Asian tribes was the result of the prevailing situations in central Asia and adjoining northwestern China.

The construction of the Great Wall of China in the 3rd century B.C. left these tribes like Hiung-nu, Wu -sun and Yueh–chi, no option but to move towards south and west.

The first migrants were Yueh-chi, they displaced Sakas.

The Sakas invaded Bactria and Parthia and thereafter entered India through the Bolan Pass.

The Sakas were divided into five branches and established themselves in various parts of north-western and northern India.

The first branch settled in Afghanistan.

The second branch settled in Punjab with Taxila as its capital.

The third branch settled in Mathura.

The fourth in Maharashtra and Saurashtra.

The fifth in central India with Ujjain as its capital.

The Sakas ruled in different areas from the 1st century B.C. to about 4th century A.D.

Therefore, Sakas ruled in different parts of the country. However, the branch of Sakas who ruled in central and western India rose to prominence.

Nahapana was the most prominent ruler of western India. His reference had been found in various inscriptions in Maharashtra and in the records of the Satavahanas.

Rudradaman the most illustrious ruler of the central Indian branch. He ruled from (about) A.D. 130 to 150.

Junagarh rock inscription was erected by Rudradaman.

Junagarh inscription mentioned that his rule extended over a vast territory including the areas of Gujarat, Sindh, Saurashtra, north Konkan, Malwa, and some parts of Rajasthan.

Rudradaman undertook the repairs of the Sudarsan lake dam. However, Sudarsan lake dam had been built by the provincial governer of Chandragupta Maurya in Kathiawad when it was damaged by heavy rains.

Ujjayini was the capital of Rudradaman. It became a centre of culture and education.

The Saka’s dynasty came to an end with the defeat of the last king in the hands of Chandragupta II of the Gupta dynasty, in about A.D. 390.
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