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Historical references



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Manthani in Historical References

The inscription of Sri Jagadguru Shankaracharya at Dwarakapeetam and Pushpagiri Peetam reveal that Adi Shankara visited Mantrakootam during early sixth century B.C. and praised the Vedic customs and Vedic literacy of the people of this place.

A local writer ‘Kase Sarvappa’ described grazing of cattle belonging to King Somadeva Raju of Sixth Century B.C. who ruled ‘Kandarapura’ on the banks of River Godavari from Bhadrachalam to Mantrakootam.

Archeological evidences suggest existence of Mantrakoota (Manthani) from the times of King Rajendra Chola-I who ruled the southern parts of India during 1012-1044 AD.

A local king named “Gunda Raju” ruled Mantrakootam as a feudatory of Western Chalukyan King, Tribuvana Malla. As per the inscription of Gunda Raju found in Bokkala Vaagu and another inscription of Kakatiya Ruler from Warangal, King Prola-II, “Gunda Raju” was as enemy of Kakatiya. King Prola-II fought a war with Gunda Raju and defeated Gunda Raju and forced him to flee the place and take asylum in Karnataka. This war of “Thaduru” is very much referred to in ‘Folk Songs’ of elderly people.

The ‘Pratapa Charitra’ describes that Kakatiya Queen Rudramamba of Orugallu crossed river Godavari at Mantrakootam while fighting a war with Mahadeva Raju of Devagiri (1260-1270 AD). She won the battle and forced Mahadeva Raju to confine himself inside the Fort of Devagiri. This episode may well be a truth, as we come across some remarkable stone relics of war heroes, elephants and water stallions of Kakatiya Sculpture in the vicinity of Manthani.

Renowned Archeologist Dr. D.C. Sarkar of Archeological Survey of India, found inscriptions describing records of worshiping offered by ‘Mallikarjuna Suri’ a preceptor of Kakatiya King Pratapa Rudra at Kashi, Gaya and Mantrakootam. Suri’s praisings to the Deity in some temples quoted to contain the verses “Mantrakoota Gopijana Vallabhaya”. Suri’s wife Gouri was also said to have visited these three Holy Places alongwith her husband. There are stone-carved inscriptions at Kashi, Gaya and Manthani as well. The inscription at Manthani is on the Tammi Cheruvu Katta. Shri Tiruvarangam Papaiah Shastry of Hyderabad published the details of this inscription in Telugu Newspaper “Golkonda Patrika”.
The details of this inscription are as follows

“The 4X1 Ft. sized stone inscription is designed with idols carved on all the four sides of it. The first side with Lord Vinayaka being breastfed by his mother Goddess Parvathi, The Second Side with Sun & Moon, The Third Side with Cow while the Fourth side has became illegible. The inscription on the stone is in Devanagari Lipi and Sanskrit Language. The gifts of Sarvasri Allum Prola Raju (King of Chennuru), Mallikarjuna Suri (Religious preceptor or Purohit Rudra Deva Raya) are also described. The inscription is dated back to 1199-1200 A.D. The inscription starts with “Sri Mantrakoota Gopijana Vallabhayanamaha” and also the God of Gopijana Vallabha Deva was praised on many occasions, thus indicating to existence of some deity by that name, though there is no such reference to any God being worshiped in any of the existing temples in the village and around.

The inscription is in three parts. The First part describes the glory and grandeur of Warangal (Orugallu), Capital of Andhra Rajya, and the greatness of Raja Kakatiya Ganapati Deva and the Second part describes the superior authority of Krishna Nayaka who had a son, Sri Mallikarjuna Suri, who held high positions in the Kakatiya Kingdom during the period of Ganapati Deva and Rudra Deva Raya. The Third part describes that Allum Prola Raju, King of Chennuru donated the surrounding land to Sri Mallabhattopadhyaya (alias Mallikarjuna Suri) in 1121 A.D. The fourth part describes Mallikarjuna Suri having installed Sivalingas at several places and granted many villages to support their worship. Under the advice of Mallikarjuna Suri, King Rudra Deva Raya gifted Mantrakootam to a Brahmin by name Sri Gopala Suri and constructed many houses and tanks for the benefit of the people. He also constructed Sri Narasimha Swamy temple and granted villages whose rental income should be able to support the expenses of the worship of God.

The inscription as well as the “Manthani Ramayana” of Muddu Balam Bhattu, gives a clear idea that there was a temple dedicated to Gopijana Vallabha Deva or Lord Krishna at Manthani. Local elderly men say that there were some other temples around Bhiksheshwara temple, unfortunately, whose history is buried in the past.

From the Malkapuram (in Guntur District) inscription, it can be noticed that Kakatiya King Ganapati Deva gifted Agraharams to his Guru as Acharya Dakshina and the “Acharya” had set up many Shiva Temples all over Andhra Pradesh in various places such as Mantrakootam, Chandravali, Kommugrama (Kommuru) Nivritti and Uttara-Somasila.

After the downfall of Kakatiya Kingdom, with the defeat and death of Pratapa Rudra in 1323 A.D. this region was taken over by the rulers of Delhi, Moahammad-bin-Tuglaq and his deputies. As the locality is far off from rulers from Delhi, the local Velamas, Reddies dominated local areas and declared themselves independent. The region was last known to be ruled by one of such Velama Dora Kapaya Kayaka (1334-1365 AD) Chief of erstwhile Samantha Rajas of the area. He was said to be assassinated by Velamas from Recharla.

Ahmed Shah of Gulbarga launched an unexpected attack on this place in 1433 A.D. with a strong military force and conquered the area easily. Bahmani Sultans appointed Quli Qutub Shah as a Governor of the region. He became independent in 1518 A.D and took over the nearby Forts of Ramagiri and Warangal.

In 1626 A.D. Abdullah Qutub Shah (1626-1672) became king of this region. His daughter was married to the son of Emperor Aurangazeb of Delhi and the Fort of Ramagiri and its surroundings were then given as Dowry to his son-in-law. The Ramagiri Fort was the War Camp for Mogul Emperor in 1687 A.D. for his military operations against Deccan and Golkonda Fort. Subsequently, when Asif Jah I, Deccan Subedar of the Mughal Empire declared independence and established his kingdom in 1724 A.D. Manthani and its environs became a part of the Nizam’s hegemony. On 13th September, 1948 Manthani was merged with the India along with the erstwhile Hyderabad state.