Researchers from the Bhandarkar Oriental Research Institute (BORI), which houses South Asia’s largest collection of manuscripts and rare texts, have decoded three copper plates belonging to rulers from medieval South Indian dynasties.
- The oldest plate, which has inscriptions in Sanskrit and Kannada, dates back to the 7 Century A.D. It records an anecdote about Vinayaditya, who ruled the Badami Chalukyan dynasty from 680 A.D. to 696 A.D. Vinayaditya gifted the village of Telgi in Karnataka to a scholar of the Gautam Gotra in 683 A.D. The village is on the northern banks of the Krishna river in Bijapur district in Karnataka.
- The Chalukya plate, which is divided into three iron strips, consists of 33 lines of text spread across it. The strips are made into a ring and contain the king’s seal depicting a boar
- The second plate dates back to the time of the Yadava dynasty of Devagiri. It records King Kanhardev Yadav giving a strip of land near Saundatti in Karnataka to some beneficiaries on April 29, 1254.
- Kanhardev ruled the Yadavas before the dynasty was subjugated by Ala-ud-Khilji and incorporated into the Delhi Sultanate in 1294 A.D. This plate too bears three strips and consists of 104 lines in Sanskrit and Kannada. It also has a seal in the shape of an eagle.
- The third plate, dated January 7, 1606, belongs to King Venkatapati Raya of the Aravidu dynasty, which was the fourth and the last Hindu clan to hold sway over the once-powerful Vijayanagara Empire.
- The plate dates back to a time when the empire’s grandeur had all but faded after Rama Raya, the powerful regent of the Vijayanagara empire, suffered a crushing defeat at the hands of the Bahamani kings in the battle of Talikota in 1565 A.D.
- The Aravidu plate bears five strips and 160 lines of text. It talks about a land grant in the villages of Puliyendal and Randal in Karnataka.