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The inscription contains in lines 2 and 3 the following date, viz., the tenth tithi of the dark fortnight of Śrāvana in the victorious thirteenth year. This date is mentioned in close connection with the name of the Mahādandanāyaka Śrīdharavarman to whose reign it apparently refers, but Banerji though that as Srīdharavarman did not claim any royal title, it was extremely improbable that the year 13 was of his reign. He therefore referred the date to the reign of Jīvadāman, the father of Rudrasimha II and the founder of the third dynasty of the Satraps of Saurāshtra, whose name, he thought, he could read in line I. 1 But, as Majumdar has shown, this view is untenable;2 for (i) the existing traces of letters in line 1 show that the correct reading of the passage where Banerji read the name of the Kshatrapa ruler is vīrya-ārjjita-vijaya3; (ii) no title like Svāmin is prefixed to the name of Jivadāman even according to the reading of Banerji; and (iii) victorious thirteenth year mentioned in line 2 is described as augmenting the reign evidently of Śrīdharavarman who is named immediately before in that line. It seems therefore that Śrīdharavarman, though he held only the military title of Mahādandanāyaka, was, to all intents and purposes, an independent ruler, since he does not mention any overlord in this epigargp4.

There is another date towards the close of the record which has been differently read by Banerji and Majumdar. The former called attention to the two symbols which immediately follow the aforementioned verse in the Śārdūlavikrīdita metre. The first of these, he thought, was ‘the Western Kshatrapa symbol for 200 written at one stroke’, while the second signified the unit. The date was thus 201 which Banerji referred to the Śaka era and took as equivalent to 279 A. C. Mr. Majumdar, on the other hand, thought that the first sign had no resemblance to a 200 figure and that it was unlikely to be a numerical symbol since it was not introduced by a word like varsha or samvatsara. He, therefore, took it to be a sign of interpunction indicating the end of the verse. Mr. Majumdar, however, drew attention to the letter sa which occurs at some distance from this sign followed by ‘apparently three numerical symbols’. He was not certain about the reading of the first of these, but took it tentatively as signifying 200. The other two signs he read as 40 and 1. The date of the epigraph was thus, according to Majumdar, 241. He referred this year to the Śaka era and took it as equivalent to 319 A.C.5

Whatever may be the correct reading of this date, the attribution of it to the Śaka era is not plausible;6 for there is no other early date of that era coming from either Eastern or Western Malwa. The Śaka era was, no doubt, used by the Kshatrapas in Kathiawad, but no records of their rule have been found in Malwa. In fact Kshatrapa supremacy in Malwa seems to have terminated about the middle of the third century A.C.7 It seems therefore better to refer the date to the so-called Kalachuri-Chedi era which was undoubtedly current in the adjoining Anūpa country as evidenced by the inscriptions of Subandhu.8

1Ep. Ind., Vol. XVI, 231.
2J.A.S.B., N.S., Vol. XIX (1923), pp. 340 ff.
3Banerji read here s-āditya-vīryya-Jivadāma-..
4An analogous instance is that of the Śunga Emperor Pushyamitra, who retained his military title of Sēnāpati to the last. Ep. Ind., Vol. XX, p. 57; Kālidāsa, Mālavikāgnimitra, Act. v. .
5J.A.S.B., N.S., Vol. XIX, p. 342.
6Dr. D.R. Bhandarkar also gives this date doubtfully under the Śaka era. See I.N.I., p. 144. The earliest date of the Śaka ear found in Central India is the year 784 in a Jain inscription from Deogad in the Jhansi District. I.N.I., No. 1085.
7Kshatrapa copper coinage of the Malwa fabric ceases about 240 A.C. Rapson, C.A.D., Introd., p. cxxxiii.
8Nos. 6 and 7, below.


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