Orissa News

Dharmaratha was a powerful king who was instrumental in bringing the entire Kalinga into a single fold by defeating the Mandals of South Tosali ,Kalinga and Kangoda.His brother Indraratha was appointed the as Governor of those two territories which were jointly renamed as Kalinga.

The death of Dharmaratha set a civil war between his two brothers who were aspiring for the throne.While Naghusa declared himself the king, Indraratha, who was the Governor of Kalinga at the time of Dharmaratha’s rule defied him openly.Consequently, Indraratha was successful in defeating Nagusha and declaring himself as the King in the year 1000A.D.He was an able and ambitious ruler. However a combined attack by the Paramara king Bhoja and Rajendra Chola led to his defeat and death.

There was anarchy and confusion in South Kosala following his death.Subsequently Chandihara Jajati, the son of Abhimanyu was installed as the king.Mahasivagupta Jajati II was an important ruler of this dynasty and his kingdom comprised Kosala, Utkal as well as Kalinga and Kangoda. He constructed the Lingaraja temple and his wife Kolavati is known to have built the temple of Brahmeshwar at Bhubaneswar.

Lingaraj temple was built by Somvamsi king Jajati Keshari

Jajati II was succeeded by his son Udyota Kesari. During his time the Kalachuris of Tummana attempted to invade the western part of his kingdom. So Udyota Kesari created Bamanda Mandala and placed it in charge of a military officer named Sripunja. But Bamanda Mandala was subsequently lost to the Kalachuris.

Udyota kesari was a devout Saiva and at the same time a patron of Jainism. He probably built the Jagamohan of Lingaraja temple. The Navamuni cave at Khandagiri was excavated by the Jain monk Subhachandra, a disciple of Kalachandra, in the 18th regnal year of Udyota Kesari.

After the death of Udyota Kesari his son Janamejaya II succeeded to the throne. He fought against the Naga king

Somesvaradeva. Yasoraja, the General of Somesvaradeva belonging to the Telugu Chola family occupied some parts of Kosala and establishesd there the rule of his family. Janamejaya II was also defeated by Vanapati, the General of the Ganga king Rajraj I. After the death of Janamejaya, his son Puranjaya came to the throne. He ruled for a brief period.

He was succeeded by his brother Kamadeva at about 1090 A.D. He was the last Somavamsi ruler of Utkal. During his time the Ganga king Chodagangadeva of Kalinga invaded Utkal and succeeded in defeating him about 1110 A.D. Kamadeva was, however, allowed to rule over the territory for sometime but subsequently, probably after the death of Kamadeva, Utkal was annexed to Ganga empire sometime before 1118 A.D.

The Imperial Gangas

The power of the Ganga kings that had subsided after Devendravarman V earlier had continued with their rule as a petty power.It was the coronation of Vajrahasta V in 1038 A.D that resuscitated new life into the fledgling kingdom.

Son of King of Kamarnava II,Vajrahasta V,he made Kalinga independent by defeating the Somvasis.Continuing with a policy of matrimonial alliance with powerful Kingdoms,he married the princess of Ceylon and Kalachuri that helped him consolidate the poitical power of his family.

Rajrajdev : He was succeeded in 1070 A.D. by his son Rajrajdev I born of his queen Anangadevi. Rajarajdev was faced with his enemies, the Somavamsis of Utkal in the north and the Chalukya of Vengi in the south. By 1075 A.D., with the aid of his Commander Vanapati of Vengi, he was successful in vanquishing all including kings of Chola, Utkal, Khemundi, Kosala, Gidvisingi Vengi and The Somavamsi king Janamejaya II.

Choda Gangadev : Rajrajdev had a premature death in 1077 A.D. He left two young sons. At an age of two, the elder Choda Gangadeva boy was crowned king at Kalinganagar in February, 1078 A.D.He was well supported by Vira Choda, the viceroy of Vengi.

Chodagangadev built the walls around Lord jagannath templeIn the year 1092,Choda Ganga married the Vengi princess.As a downfall of this, Vira Choda was removed from the throne by his father and a war broke between the Vengis and the Ganga dynasties.. The first war against Vengi was fought in 1093-94 A.D. in which the Gangas were defeated and the southern part of Kalinga was occupied by the Cholas. The second Vengi-Kalinga war took place in 1110 A.D. and this time also Kalinga sustained heavy loss. However Chodaganga succeeded in his war against Utkal. Kamadeva, the Somavamsi King of Utkal was defeated in 1110 A.D Chodagangadeva however, allowed the defeated King Kamadeva to continue his rule as a vassal chief.

Chodagangadeva then marched towards the north and overran Dandabhukti. After that he occupied the Sumha territory where he appointed his nominee Samantasena as ruler. Subsequently Samantasena founded the Sen Dynasty in Bengal.