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Author:Laxman Burdak, IFS (Retd.)

Kalasharaja or Kalasha (1063–1089) alias Ranaditya was a king of Kashmir.

Kalasharaja in the Genealogy of Nara

Rajatarangini[1] provides us following Genealogy of Nara:

Genealogy of Nara, King of Darvabhisara

Formerly at Darvvabhisara there lived a king named Nara of the Gotra of Bharadvaja, who had a son named Naravahana, and Naravahana had a son named Phulla. Phulla had a son named Sarthavahana, his son was Chandana, and Chandana had two sons, Gopala and Sinharaja, Sinharaja had several children, his daughter Didda was married to Kshemagupta. Didda made Sanggramaraja (son of her brother Udayaraja) king. She had another brother, Kantiraja, and he had a son named Jassaraja, Sanggramaraja had a son named Ananta, while of Jassaraja were born Tanvangga and Gungga. Ananta's son was Kalasharaja, and of Gungga was born Malla. Kalasha's son is king Harshadeva, and Malla's sons were Uchchala and Sussala.

Jat clans


Kishtwar is first referred to in the Rajatarangini by the ancient name Kashthavata, during the reign of Raja Kalsa of Kashmir (1063–1089), when "Uttamaraja", the ruler of Kashthavata visited the court of the Kashmir King in company with several other hill chiefs to pay their respects to the Raja.

In Rajatarangini

Rajatarangini[2] tells....Gradually the simple king became henpecked, a circumstance which became the cause of his misfortunes. By the advice of the queen who was blind in her affection for her son, the king made preparations to abdicate his kingdom to his son Kalasha, though in this he was opposed by wise Haladhara and other wise men. " You will repent of this " said his ministers to him. In spite of this advice however, he coronated his Son Ranaditya (otherwise called Kalasha), in the Kashmirian era thirty-nine on the sixth of Sravana, bright moon. [VII,p.184-185]

Kalasha sets on fire Anantadeva's place

Rajatarangini[3] tells.... Anantadeva Suspecting however that his son Kalasha, at the instigation of Jayananda, intended to imprison him, the old man went out of the capital with a sorrowful heart and lived at Jayeshvara. At night Kalasha burnt the forage of his father's horses and killed his foot soldiers with fire and poisoned arms and by artifice. The enmity between them kindled again, and the queen blinded by her affection for her son, prevented her husband from retaliating. There lived a prostitute, Kaivarta by caste, named Ladva, and she had a submissive and very wily paramour named Thakka Damara. Now, king Kalasha was pleased to hear men call his parents by the names of the above pair. But his parents bestowed a pair of human images of gold equal to their own weight, in charity and so beguiled their grief. When their son found that they had remained unruffled by his satirical allusions and had riches enough to carry out their works he set fire to their place. The fire burnt the house of god Vijayeshvara

[p.198]: and the sacred things it contained. The queen was grieved to see every thing destroyed and attempted to commit suicide, but was forced out of the burning house by the sons of Tanvangga. On the preceding night the soldiers had taken off their clothes when going to bed; and when they rose the next morning they had nothing to cover themselves with, every thing being burnt. Kalasha stood on the terrace of his palace, and saw the flames rising to the sky, and danced with joy. The old king seeing every thing destroyed, crossed the river, but was drowned with his wife in the sea of grief. The queen found in the morning a linga, unburnt which was made of jewels and which she sold for seventy lacs to the Tākās. With this money she bought food and clothes for the servants, and repaired the burnt house. The king found so vast a quantity of gold, &c, from the embers, that its narration astonishes one even to this day. When tho place was reduced to wilderness, the king lived there by building huts of the barks of Nada. Though he had wealth and was willing to re-build the town, yet he could not, get his son's permission for so doing. It was thus that the son who had obtained the kingdom by mere chance, and who was protected by his mother's affection, harassed his father. Wishing to send his patents away, he repeatedly sent messengers to hit father and told him to go and live at Parnotsa. His queen also urged him to do the same, whereupon he became angry and rebuked her in the presence of Tanvangga

[p.199]: and Thakkana. [[VII,p.197-199]

Harsha quarrels with his father Kalasha

Rajatarangini[4] tells.... On the other hand, Harsha having got the wealth of his grandmother at Vijayeshvara, and being joined by some of her retainers, quarreled with his father. Both the father and the son were then at Vijayeshvara, but on the breaking out of the quarrel, the father went to his

[p.204]: capital while the son remained there. The penniless father feared his rich son and sent messenger to him ; he treated fur peace, and invited him. The proud son was at last persuaded by the solicitations of the messengers repeatedly sent to him, to reluctantly make peace with his father. The father was to protect the person and property of the son, and the son to pay a certain amount to the father every day. When Kalasha entered Vijayeshvara to receive Harsha, his eyes ached to see the houses he had burnt before, and his ears were filled with the reproaches of the populace. Accompanied by his son who came with his treasure the king entered the capital ; and the treasures were sealed with the seal of his son. From this time the king turned virtuous, and learnt frugality which dispels poverty. [VII,p.203-204]

Rajatarangini[5] mentions one Kalasharaja, a principal Thakkura of Rajapuri, who was bribed by king Harsha for his support during rein of Harsha of Kashmir. [VII (i)]] (p.265, 266, 268)]

Death of King Kalasha

Rajatarangini[6] tells.... The king began to commit unheard of crimes, such as foretold his sudden death. First he uprooted the copper image of the Sun, and then took it away from the temple. Wishing to obtain the proportion of those who died without leaving any children, the cruel king descended to mean actions. The curses of the people and his excessive fondness for women brought on gonorrhea. The king now thought of performing certain ceremonies (Kumbhapratishtha) in the temple of Hara. Then the king's nose began to bleed, — all attempts to cure it failed or rather increased the disease. Much bleeding reduced him and he was obliged to take to bed. He had indigestion, and lost his strength and flesh. He was anxious to give his kingdom to Harsha, but seeing his ministers averse to it, he brought Utkarsha from the hills of Lohara. On his death-bed he distributed riches to all, high and low, but not to the females of his household. He then asked his ministers to bring Harsha that ho might give him riches and send him out of the kingdom. The ministers sent away the royal guards who kept watch on Harsha and placed the Thakkuras of Lohara in their place, and then informed Utkarsha of all that had happened. They then took Harsha out to the dancing house, and tied him, bereft of all his friends, to the four-pillared room. On the

[p.221]: other hand the king,on the point of his death, told his men to take him to a shrine. Remembering that his disease was the result of his uprooting Tamrasvami he wished to take refuge at Martanda. Urged by fear the king went to that shrine leaving that of Vijayakshetra. At the time of death the wise and the foolish alike act like children. This action of the king showed his weakness, and the good instructions he had received became objects of laughter. On the third bright lunar day in the month of Agruhayana at night fall the king set out in a carriage drawn by a pair towards the temple of the Sun. The sounds of the drum, &c, drowned that of the lamentations of the people. He then went by river in a boat with his ministers and ladies. Next day, at about evening, he reached the temple of the Sun, and there, in the hope of life, he caused a golden image to he made. His pain was further aggravated by his anxiety to see his eldest son Harsha, but still his servants disobeyed him, and would not bring Harsha before the dying king. The king sighed, and opening the doors of his room heard the songs which the singers sang outside, and which were composed by Harsha. When a king's order at the time of his death is not attended to, it gives greater pain than death itself. He instructed Utkarsha to divide (the kingdom) with his brother Harsha, and his tongue lost the power of speech. He only muttered repeatedly the name of Harsha, and to understand his

[p.222]:intentions the minister, Nonaka, brought a looking glass. The king smiled and shook his head refusing the mirror, and bit his lips and muttered something ; and after a day and a half, he entirely lost his power of speech. At the moment of his death he signed to his ministers to approach him, and caused himself to be taken, by those who were not overwhelmed with grief, before the image of the Sun. At the age of forty-nine on the sixth bright lunar day in the month of Agrahayana in the year sixty-five of the Kashmirian era he died. Mammanika and six others of his queens died in his funeral, as also a concubine named Joyamati. Kayyā, another of his mistresses whom he had enriched with his favor, was the disgrace of her sex. She forgot that she was the principal of the late king's mistresses, and had been born of low caste, and the position of her lover. It grieves in that she went to Vijayakshetra and took into her favor the officers of the place. Fie to the woman who was once beloved of the king, but brought herself down to be an object of enjoyment of the villagers. All the ministers were anxious to coronate Utkarsha, only the grateful minister Vamana performed the funeral rites of the late king. On one side arose the music and songs of coronation, and on the other the lamentation for the dead and funeral music.

Rajatarangini[7] tells....King Kalasha had strong common sense, and his servant Rilhana set up gold umbrellas and became his favourite. At Sureshvari where the united images of Hara and Parvati were kept, the gold umbrella, decorated with bells, won the affection of both the god and the goddess, on the " night of the lamps." [VIII (ii), p.312]


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