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Civilization of Jharkhand

Ancient History

In the ancient days the northern portion of present Jharkhand state in India was a tributary to Magadha (ancient Bihar) Empire and souther part was a tributary to Kalinga (ancient Orissa) Empire. According to a legend, Raja Jai Singh Deo of Orissa was accepted as the ruler of Jharkhand by its people in the 13th century. The Singh Deo's of Orissa have been very instrumental in the early history of Jharkhand. The local tribal heads had developed into barbaric dictators who could govern the province neither fairly nor justly. Consequently, the people of this state approached the more powerful rulers of Jharkhand's neighbouring states who were perceived to have a more fair and just governance. This became the turning point in the history of the region wherein rulers from Orissa moved in with their armies and created states that were governed for the benefit of the people and involved their participation, thus ending the barbarism that had marked the region for centuries. The good tribal rulers continued to thrive and were known as the Munda Rajas, and exist to this day. (These are regions which are still semi- autonomous, the degree of autonomy depending on the size of each specific Munda Raja's domain.) Later, during the Mughal period, the Jharkhand area was known as Kukara. After the year 1765, it came under the control of the British Empire and became formally known under its present title, "Jharkhand" - the Land of "Jungles" (forests) and "Jharis" (bushes). Located on Chhota Nagpur Plateau and Santhal Parganas, has evergreen forests, rolling hills and rocky plateaus with many places of keen beauty like Lodh Falls.

People visit Jharkhand not just visit other places, but other times. The past is unbelievably attractive and authentic. If one seeks the cultural roots and the long traditions that bind past to present. This priceless heritage, that will never be remade or replicated nor altered. Every destination will be like a mythic deliverance for the traveller interested in history and archeology. Enchantment will go hand in hand with your journey into Jharkhand's past - a meeting ground, the common place of Indian history, a plural embracing of religious beliefs, a multitude of heroes, gods and goddesses, rubbing shoulders with the living, casting a benevolent eye on Jharkhand's progress into the future.

An abundance of fossil remains and pre-historic artifacts in some places of Jharkhand point out the possibility that the transformation of homo erectus to homo sapiens took place in the Chotanagpur region. Stone axes and other tools of early civilizations date back to over 3000 years. In the 6th or the 7th century BC - the era of the epic Mahabharata - the "Kikat" Pradesh mentioned in Rig Veda was located somewhere in the Parasnath hills in Giridih district of Jharkhand.

The enormous wealth of past times, civilized existence, human socities and their cultural patterns, survive in caves, monuments, rock-art in shelters (petrographs) and it is open for the world to explore. Cave paintings in some part of Jharkhand, 'stone art' and 'petrography' also indicate the passage of geological time and the ancient presence of a civilization that may even pre-date the legendary Harappa. Many districts of Jharkhand abound in such sites and relics.