Emulate Krishnadevaraya to leave enduring legacy: Chidambaram

January 27th, 2010 - 11:42 pm ICT by IANS  

P. Chidambaram Hampi (Karnataka), Jan 27 (IANS) Union Home Minister P. Chidambaram Wednesday called upon the present-day rulers to emulate Vijayanagara emperor Krishnadevaraya to leave behind a rich legacy for posterity.
“We must remember that like former rulers and kings, governments and ministers must leave behind a legacy of enduring values, a tradition of peace, harmony and unity,” Chidambaram said in his address at the 500th anniversary of the coronation of the emperor at this renowned world heritage site, about 350 km from Bangalore.

Releasing a set of books on the times and life during the emperor’s reign from 1509 to 1529 in this historic capital city, Chidambaram said the Vijayanagara king was a source of inspiration and strength for modern rulers to build strong economies and infrastructure, patronise arts and culture, encourage study, research and development to bring the benefits of progress to all sections of the people.

“These are the abiding lessons I have gathered from reading the history of this great empire and its great emperor. I join all of you in paying rich tributes to this great king on the 500th anniversary of his coronation,” Chidambaram told thousands of people who flocked to the main venue for the grand inaugural ceremony.

Recalling the golden era of the Vijayanagara kingdom during the Krishnadevaraya’s reign, the minister said it was a great honour and privilege to stand where once the mighty empire flourished from mid-14th century to mid-16th century.

“Krishnadevaraya is considered the greatest among the Vijayanagara kings. He was a great warrior who fought for 11 years during his 21-year reign and vanquished every enemy,” Chidambaram said.

“Krishnadevaraya is remembered even this day for the irrigation system he built, encouraged agriculture, patronized arts as he himself was a great poet. It is said the modern Bharatnatyam (a form of classical dance famous in south India) holds its origins to his patronage,” he noted.

Referring to the grandeur of Hampi, its majestic palaces, monuments, courtyards and temples, Chidambaram said their endurance even five centuries later was a tribute to the great emperor and his great role.

Lauding the Karnataka government for celebrating the coronation anniversary 500 years on, the home minister said what was striking about the empire was the Vijayanagara kings fought many enemies but made peace with all of them once they won the battles.

“Krishnadevaraya invaded Bidar, Gulbarga and Bijapur, which form a part of the present-day north Karnataka, and earned the title of establisher of the Yavana kingdom. Though he defeated the Bahamani sultans but released sultan Mahamood after the victory and made him the de facto ruler,” Chidambaram told an estimated 25,000 people at the inaugural event.

Quoting the famous historian Barbosa, who chronicled the emperor’s respect for all sects of Hinduism and his patronage for poets and scholars in Kannada, Telugu, Tamil and Sanskrit, the minister said the Vijayanagara kings, especially Krishnadevaraya, allowed the freedom that every man will live without suffering and annoyance irrespective of religion, caste, creed, nationality and gender.

“The coronation celebrations will bring back the glory of the golden empire for the people of Karnataka and India and we should bask in the glory,” he added.

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