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Author of this article is Laxman Burdak लक्ष्मण बुरड़क
Taxakeshwar temple in Mandsaur district in Madhya Pradesh
Statue of Taxaka at Taxakeshwar temple along with his son and wife
Shesh Shaiya Statue at Bandhavgarh Fort

Naga (नागा)[1]/ Nag (नाग)[2] [3] is gotra of Jats found in Rajasthan,[4] Madhya Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh,Haryana and Punjab. Dilip Singh Ahlawat has mentioned it as one of the ruling Jat clans in Central Asia. [5]


It was a group of various vanshas who had symbol of serpent on their flags. They were called Nagavanshi. [6]

Jat Gotras Namesake

  • Naga (Jat clan) = Naga. Ratanpur Stone Inscription Of Prithvideva II - (Kalachuri) Year 915 (=1163) mentions that Brahmadeva, a feudatory of Kalachuri king Prithvideva II, lives in the Company of the best of Nâga princes in verse-13.... (V. 13)…… like the man-lion, he was the best of men, like Achyuta (Vishnu) wielding his uplifted discus, he leads a victorious army , like Vishnu who is fond of the bird (Garuda) and reclines on the best of serpents, he is fond of the Brahmanas and lives in the Company of the best of Nâga princes. (p. 509)[7]

History of Nagas

Ram Swarup Joon[9] writes that Naga gotra is a branch of Bharshiva Nag gotra.

Dr. Kashi Prasad Jaiswal writes at Page 29 of his book entitled 'India of the Dark Ages' that the Nags had three capitals i.e. Mathura, Kashipur and Padmavati after first century AD. The King of Padmavati was known by the name of Nag. The eldest of his dynasty was King Gajvarkar.

Nagas were a group of Mongoloid people,who had spread throughout India by the advent of the period of the epics Mahabharata and Ramayana. The demi-god tribe called Suparnas (to which Garuda belonged) were arch-rivals of the Nagas. However, the Nagas near Kashmir seem to be the original abode of all of them. Places like Anantnag attest this theory.

  1. Naga Ananta was the first among all the Naga kings.
  2. The second Naga chief Vasuki had the kingdom near Kailasa (hence the connection of Vasuki with lord Siva).
  3. The third chief Takshaka, in Takshasila both not far from Anantnag.
  4. The kingdoms of other Nagas like Karkotaka and Airavata (near river Iravati (Ravi, one among the five rivers of Punjab) were also not far away.

Nagas had kingdoms in Nagaland and Andhra Pradesh. Arjuna's wife Ulupi was from one of such Naga kingdom (in Gangetic Plain) Arjuna's another wife Chitrangada who also was known to Ulupi was from Manipuri (location uncertain). She was probably from a Dravidian tribe. There are now many Naga worshiping places in South India, especially in Andhra Pradesh and Kerala.

Naga race was almost exterminated by Janamejaya, the Kuru king in Arjuna's line, who conducted the massacre of Nagas at Takshasila. This massacre was stopped by Astika, a Brahmin whose mother was a Naga (Vasuki's sister Jaratkaru).

According to a story in Matsya Puran, quoted in chapter X of a book India of the Dark Ages the Nagas ruled for 100 years as renegades (this because they were Buddhist). Later, it is said they purified themselves with water of the Ganga, performed ten Asvamedha Yagyas and were thus accepted, into the folds of Vaishnavism.

In Mahavamsa

Mahavamsa, provides a continuous historical record of over two millennia, and is considered one of the world's longest unbroken historical accounts.[10] It is one of the few documents containing material relating to the Nāga and Yakkha peoples, indigenous inhabitants of Lanka prior to the legendary arrival of Prince Vijaya from Singha Pura.

Mahavansa/Chapter 1 writes about the Visit of Buddha to Nagadipa ... Now the most compassionate Teacher, the Conqueror, rejoicing in the salvation of the whole world, when dwelling at Jetavana in the fifth year of his Buddhahood, saw that a war, caused by a gem-set throne, was like to come to pass between the nagas Mahodara and Cülodara, uncle and nephew, and their followers; and he, the Sambuddha, on the uposathaday of the dark half of the month Citta, in the early morning, took his sacred alms-bowl and his robes, and, from compassion for the nagas, sought the Nagadipa.

That same naga Mahodara was then a king, gifted with miraculous power, in a naga-kingdom in the ocean, that covered half a thousand yojanas. His younger sister had been given (in marriage) to the naga-king on the Kannavaddhamana mountain; her son was Culodara. His mother's father had given to his mother a splendid throne of jewels, then the naga had died and therefore this war of nephew with uncle was threatening; and also the nagas of the mountains were armed with miraculous power.

The deva named Samiddhisumana took a rajayatana-tree standing in Jetavana, his own fair habitation, and, holding it like a parasol over the Conqueror, he, with the Teacher's leave, attended him to that spot where he had formerly dwelt. That very deva had been, in his latest birth, a man in Nagadipa. On the spot where thereafter the rajayatana-tree stood, he saw paceekabuddhas taking their meal. And at the sight his heart was glad and he offered branches to cleanse the alms bowl. Therefore he was reborn in that tree in the pleasant Jetavana-garden, and it (the tree) stood afterwards outside at the side of the gate-rampart. The God of all gods saw (in this) an advantage for that deva, and, for the sake of the good which should spring (therefrom) for our land, he brought him hither (to Lafika) together with his tree.

Hovering there in mid-air above the battlefield the Master, who drives away (spiritual) darkness, called forth dread darkness over the nagas. Then comforting those who were distressed by terror he once again spread light abroad. When they saw the Blessed One they joyfully did reverence to the Master's feet. Then preadied the Vanquisher to them the doctrine that begets concord, and both nagas gladly gave up the throne to the Sage.' When the Master, having alighted on the earth, had taken his place on a seat there, and had been refreshed with celestial food and drink by the naga-kings, he, the Lord, established in the (three) refuges and in the moral precepts eighty kotis of snake-spirits, dwellers in the ocean and on the mainland.

The naga-king Maniakkhika of Kalyani, mother's brother to the naga Mahodara, who had come thither to take part in the battle, and who, aforetime, at the Buddha's first coming, having heard the true doctrine preached, had become established in the refuges and in the moral duties, prayed now to the Tathagata: `Great is the compassion that thou hast shown us here, O Master! Hadst thou not appeared we had all been consumed to ashes. May thy compassion yet light also especially on me, O thou who art rich in loving-kindness, in that thou shalt come yet again hither to my dwelling-country, O thou peerless one.' When the Lord had consented by his silence to come thither, he planted the rajayatana-tree on that very spot as a sacred memorial, and the Lord of the Worlds gave over the rajayatana-tree and the precious throne-seat to the naga-kings to do homage thereto. `In remembrance that I have used these do homage to them, ye naga-kings!

This, well beloved, will bring to pass blessing and happiness for you.' When the Blessed One had uttered this and other exhortation to the nägas, he, the compassionate saviour of all the world, returned to Jetavana.

In Rajatarangini

Rajatarangini[11] tells us ...At the time of Murder of the king Sussala in 1127 AD, When the rebels went out of the house, they killed the powerful Nāgaka, a servant of the king, who with drawn sword was entering the door. [VIII (i), p.113]

Rajatarangini[12] tells us ...In 1127 AD King of Kashmir Sussala was murdered and Sussala's head brought to Bhikshu. Bhikshu lost his sense of right and wrong, on account of his inhumanity. He sent the head of the late king to Rajapuri. Nagapala who lived in friendship with his brother could not brook the insult offered to the bead of his benefactor ; and farsighted men apprehended defeat from the Kashmirians and advised Nagapala to perform the last rites to his master's head. [[VIII (i),p.125-126](NagapalaNaga)

Rajatarangini[13] tells us ...Somapala, driven by his son named Bhupala and grieved at the faction which prevailed for a long time in his own kingdom, went to the king of Kashmira and sought his protection. The king who loved those who asked for his shelter, promised safety to Somapala and also to Nagapala who had given away his wealth to his two sons. The king, whose character was ennobled by real magnanimity, did not at this time of danger resent the crafty conduct of Somapala who was the cause of calamity to a great kingdom. But in order to help Nagapala, the king gave him his own army, crushed the pride of his enemies and re-established the stability of the kingdom. (p.197)

Rajatarangini[14] tells....Rajavadana was born of Ojas, a leader in the army and in the womb of a chaste woman. This Ojas beamed with prowess, and during the civil war, adorned Sussala's army which was, as it were, a test stone of heroism for the principal warriors. Rajavadana was, during his childhood, called the long-blanket-clad. Owing to the faithfulness of his father, he was retained by the king in his service, and the possession of the estates of Ebenaka &c. was gradually given to him. But Nāga, born in the hermitage of Khuya, turned the king against Rajavadana, whereupon the latter, with a view to fight, held him in subjection. All feared that being a servant, he would not act cruelly towards the king, and not being a Lavanya, would not stand against the sovereign. [VIII (ii), p.245]

Rajatarangini[15] tells us ...The great Nāga attained such fame that his own countrymen did not feel ashamed to serve him. He was adorned with the virtues of charity, forgiveness, activity and want of avarice, and he shone as one who always enjoyed riches, and he was accessible to men. [VIII (ii), p.247]

Rajatarangini[16] tells us ...The king in order to bring his enemies to his side, asked Naga with an assumed composure, to leave Rajavadana and to come under his protection. Naga, who was like a milch cow addressed [the soldiers] saying, — "Here is Rajavadana, the son of Tejas, a leader in the army, riding in the carriage in your presence. Why do you wait for him, as a sentinal waits , for his time?"[VIII (ii), p.261]

Rajatarangini[17] tells us ...In the civil war during which two sovereigns were removed and which is now carried on by the remaining one, the king became confounded, as in chess play. The Valahara intended to win over Naga, but had neither infantry nor cavalry to execute his purpose; he nevertheless persisted in his aim without such assistance. He deceived his enemies by craft. The villains (party of the Valahara) were addicted to dice, and were waiting for the end of the winter season. The Valahara consequently apprehended the destruction of his own men by Naga who was strong and remained unslackened in his enmity and had commenced to commit unfriendly acts. Naga and Dhanya ran (after the Valahara) who trembled with fear. He then consulted Bhoja and sent a message to Dhanya to the following effect : — " Bring Naga bound to me, and I will give up Bhoja." [VIII (ii) ,p.272]

Rajatarangini[18] tells us ...Since the time of Bhikshu, Naga was always rebelling, and on account of his hostility, the king was waging war, for self interest, and had become indifferent towards him. The king arrested Naga without taking any pledge for obtaining Bhoja. Sensible men became for this reason angry with him. This action of the king was finally productive of good results, but such results were not foreseen by him, and could not be foreseen except by superhuman intelligence. Bhoja, as if estranged [ from the Valahara ] sent information to Naga that " the Valahara intends to give me up to the king after taking from the king a pledge for his surrendering you to the Valahara." Bhoja did not believe that he would be seized, but said this to Naga in the hope that Naga, out of fear of the king, might remain neutral. [VIII (ii) ,p.273]

Rajatarangini[19] tells us ...When Shashthachandra died, the king caused Naga to be brought to him, by means of Jayachandra whom he had won over to his side. Fearing that Jayachandra whom the king had brought over to his side would kill him, the minister Naga was preparing to depart, but Bhoja caused him to be obstructed. Even after knowing that he had been drawn there by these two men, Naga lost his self control, and sent a message, through messengers, to Bhoja. When a man sinks in the womb of the stream of fate, his cars can not hear the voice of one warning him, from the banks, of his condition.

When Naga was arrested, his terrified relatives came and took protection of the crafty Valahara who could with difficulty be seen. Dhanya took with him Naga who was the price for buying Bhoja, ran together with Rilhana, and went to the Valahara. The Valahara who was deceiving them, laughed internally and misled them saying : — " Give up Naga to me first, and I will give up Bhoja to you." [VIII (ii) ,p.274]

Rajatarangini[20] tells us ...Murder of Naga and the rise of the Damaras: Loshtaka, son of Naga's brother, was a determined man and had obtained property when Naga was afar ; and was secretly [Naga's] enemy. He caused Naga to be killed by Dhanya and others. When Naga was destroyed by the ministers blinded by causeless enmity, [the king's] own men and others blamed the ill advised act. The Damaras, followers of Naga, became angry at the murder of their own tribes-men, and set themselves up against [the king) and took refuge of the powerful Valahara. When a man gets confused at the approach of danger, and wanders from his object, and does evil deeds, Fate determines his work. Auspicious Fate puts an end to the miseries of the man who, having obtained money, finds it difficult to enjoy it, who first allows his mind to travel in evil ways, loses self control and then turns about hastily into a hollow, and who shows on his person the marks produced by the stroke of the scabbard of other wen. Bhoja did not know the fate of Naga, after whom none enquired, and who was thus murdered, by the wise ministers. [VIII (ii) ,p.275]

Rajatarangini[21]tells.... In order to prevent the destruction of the Damaras, Bhoja sent letters with a small detachment of foreigners under Naga, and a body of Rajputs. Neither by his own cunning followers nor by tumults could the patient Bhoja be moved from his cool determination and fixed purpose. [VIII (ii), p.291]

Villages founded by Naga clan

Villages after Naga


विजयेन्द्र कुमार माथुर[22] ने लेख किया है कि....खांडवप्रस्थ के स्थान पर पांडवों की इंद्रप्रस्थ नामक नई राजधानी बनने के पश्चात अग्नि ने कृष्ण और अर्जुन की सहायता से खांडववन को भस्म कर दिया था. इसमें कुछ अनार्य जातियाँ जैसे नाग और दानव लोगों का निवास था जो पांडवों की नई राजधानी के लिए भय उपस्थित कर सकते थे. तक्षकनाग इसी वन में रहता था और यहीं मयदानव नामक महान यांत्रिक का निवास था जो बाद में पांडवों का मित्र बन गया और जिसनेइंद्रप्रस्थ में युधिष्ठिर का अद्भुत सभा भवन बनाया. खांडववन-दाह का प्रसंग महाभारत आदि पर्व 221 से 226 में सविस्तर वर्णित है. कहा जाता है कि मयदानव का घर वर्तमान मेरठ (मयराष्ट्र) के निकट था और खांडववन का विस्तार मेरठ से दिल्ली तक, 45 मील के लगभग था. महाभारत में जलते हुए खांडववन का बड़ा ही रोमांचकारी वर्णन है. (आदि पर्व 224,35-36-37). खांडववन के जलते समय इंद्र ने उसकी रक्षा के लिए घोर वृष्टि की किन्तु अर्जुन और क़ृष्ण ने अपने शस्त्रास्त्रों की सहायता से उसे विफल कर दिया.

नागवंश का इतिहास

ठाकुर देशराज[23] ने लिखा है....नाग - यह नागहृद और नागौर में राज करते थे। इनसे सातवीं शताब्दी में यह दोनों ही स्थान निकल गए।

नागवंशज जाट - मध्य एशिया में शकवंशज जाटों के साथ एक न्यूरिअन जाति रहती थी, जिस पर नाग जाटों ने आक्रमण किया था। [24]

दलीप सिंह अहलावत[25] ने नागवंश का इतिहास इस प्रकार वर्णन किया है:

नागवंश एक सुप्रसिद्ध वंश है जो सूर्यवंश एवं चन्द्रवंश की तरह ही अनेक क्षत्रिय आर्यों के वंशों का समूह है। ऐतिहासिकों का मत है कि ये क्षत्रिय अपनी ‘नाग’ चिन्हित ध्वजा के

जाट वीरों का इतिहास: दलीप सिंह अहलावत, पृष्ठान्त-238

कारण ही नाग नाम से प्रसिद्ध हुए। यह यक्ष, गंधर्व और देवताओं की कोटि का सुसंस्कृत वंश था। इस नागवंश की उत्पत्ति के विषय में भिन्न-भिन्न विचार निम्न प्रकार से हैं -

  1. आयु (चन्द्रवंशी सम्राट्) की नवीं पीढी में एलरवा के दो पुत्र काइयान और नगस थे। इसी नगस से नागवंश की उत्पत्ति प्रतीत होती है (वैदिक सम्पत्ति पृ० 426, लेखक स० पं० रघुनन्दन शर्मा साहित्यभूषण)।
  2. प्रजापति दक्ष की कन्याओं सुरसा और कद्रु ने नाग एवं पन्नग जाति के पुत्रों को उत्पन्न किया। दक्षपुत्री विनता के दो ही पुत्र विख्यात हैं - 1. गरुड़ 2. अरुण। दक्ष की पुत्री विनता एवं कद्रु सूर्यवंशी कश्यप की पत्नियां थीं। (महाभारत आदिपर्व, अध्याय 66, श्लोक 69-70)।
  3. मनुष्यों की एक जाति ‘नाग’ जाति थी। किसी काल में इनका निवास सिन्धु के पाताल (जहां सिंधु नद समुद्र में गिरता है) और दूसरे रसातल अमेरिका आदि में थे। पाण्डव भीम की नागों ने रक्षा की थी। जनमेजय ने नागों के विरुद्ध युद्ध किया था। दक्ष की कन्याओं में एक सुरसा थी। उसके पुत्र नाग थे। मध्य एशिया में शकों के साथ एक न्यूरिअन (Neurian) जाति रहती थी। उस पर कभी नागों ने आक्रमण किया था। इस विषय में हैरोडोटस लिखता है कि डेरिअस - दारुवाह (Darius) के आक्रमण से एक पीढ़ी पहले नागों ने न्यूरिअन जाति पर आक्रमण किया। नन्दलाल दे इतिहासज्ञ के अनुसार नागों के नामों पर अनेक हूण जातियों के नाम पड़े हैं। (भारतवर्ष का बृहद् इतिहास प्रथम भाग पृ० 244-245, लेखक पं० भगवद्दत्त बी० ए०)।
  4. आदि सृष्टि अर्थात् वैदिक काल के आरम्भ में ही इस नागवंश की उत्पत्ति हो गई थी। ये लोग सूर्यवंशी और चन्द्रवंशी दोनों वंशों के हैं। इनका निवास और राज्य अमेरिका में भी वैदिक काल में था। इस विषय में महाभारत उद्योगपर्व के लेख निम्न प्रकार से हैं -

मातलि महाराज इन्द्र का सखा, सारथि, मित्र मन्त्री था। उसकी एक सुन्दरी कन्या गुणकेशी नाम की थी। मातलि अपनी इस पुत्री के लिए वर की खोज में नारद जी को साथ लेकर पाताल लोक (अमेरिका) पहुंच गये। नारद जी कहते हैं कि मातले! यह नागलोक है। यहां नागराज ऐरावत, वामन, कुमुद और अञ्जन नामक श्रेष्ठ गज सुप्रतीक के वंश में उत्पन्न हुए हैं (म० उ० अध्याय 99, श्लोक 15)।

नारद जी आगे कहते हैं कि मातले! यह नागलोक के नागराज वासुकि द्वारा सुरक्षित उनकी भोगवती नामक पुरी है। देवराज इन्द्र की सर्वश्रेष्ठ नगरी अमरावती की तरह ही यह भी सुख-समृद्धि से सम्पन्न है। नागलोक में सुरसा के पुत्र नागगण शोकसंताप से रहित होकर निवास करते हैं। बहुत से नाग कश्यप के वंशज हैं (म० उ० अध्याय 103, श्लोक 1-4)

नारद उवाच - मातले! यह नागराज सुमुख है, जो ऐरावत के कुल में उत्पन्न हुआ है। यह आर्यक का पौत्र और वामन का दौहित्र है। इसके पिता नागराज चिकुर थे जिन्हें थोड़े ही दिन पहले गरुड़ ने मार दिया था। (म० उ० अध्याय 103, श्लोक 23-25)।

मातलि के कहने पर आर्यक ने अपने पौत्र सुमुख को नारद व मातलि के साथ इन्द्र के पास भेज

जाट वीरों का इतिहास: दलीप सिंह अहलावत, पृष्ठान्त-239

दिया। वहां भगवान विष्णु भी थे। वहां पर सुमुख का विवाह गुणकेशी के साथ हो गया। विष्णु व इन्द्र ने उनको वर देकर विदा किया। सुमुख विवाह करके इच्छानुसार अपने घर चला गया। (म० उ० अध्याय 103, श्लोक 22, 23-29)।

रामायणकाल में भी इस नागवंश की बड़ी प्रसिद्धि थी। इस काल में इस विशाल नागवंश का संगठन कई छोटे-छोटे प्रसिद्ध जाट राजवंशों के द्वारा हुआ जिनमें वैसाति या वैस, तक्षक, काला (कालीधामन), पौनिया (पूनिया), औलक, कलकल, भारशिव (भराईच) आदि हैं। ये जाटवंश नागवंश की शाखा के नाम से प्रसिद्ध हैं। इनमें से पौनियावंश का वर्णन इसी तीसरे अध्याय के पिछले पृष्ठों पर लिख दिया गया है, शेष वंशों का वर्णन उचित स्थान पर लिखा जायेगा।

रावण की दिग्विजय के अवसर पर कई देशों को विजय करके रावण अपने साथ मारीच आदि राक्षसों को पुष्पक विमान पर बैठाकर, रसातल में जाने की इच्छा से दैत्यों और नागों से सेवित तथा वरुण के द्वारा सुरक्षित जलनिधि समुद्र में प्रविष्ट हुआ॥4॥ (वा० रा० उत्तरकाण्ड, सर्ग 23वां, श्लोक 4)।

स तु भोगवतीं गत्वा पुरीं वासुकिपालिताम्।
कृत्वा नागान् वशे हृष्टौ ययौ मणिमयीं पुरीम्॥5॥
(वा० रा० उत्तरकाण्ड, सर्ग 23वां, श्लोक 5)

अर्थात् - नागराज वासुकि द्वारा भोगवतीपुरी में प्रवेश करके रावण ने नागों को अपने वश में कर लिया और वहां से हर्षपूर्वक मणिमयी पुरी को प्रस्थान किया॥5॥

नोट - यह मणिमयीपुरी आज का मणिपुर राज्य है।

वा० रा० अयोध्या काण्ड, पचासवां सर्ग, श्लोक 14 -

देवदानव गन्धर्वैः किनरैरुपशोभिताम्।
नागगन्धर्वपत्नीभिः सेवितां सततं शिवाम्॥14॥

देवता, दानव, गन्धर्व और किन्नर उस शिव के स्वरूप जैसी गंगा की शोभा बढ़ाते हैं। नागों और गन्धर्वों की पत्नियां उसके जल का सदा सेवन करती हैं॥14॥

वा० रा० किष्किन्धा काण्ड इकतालीसवां सर्ग - सीताजी की खोज के लिए सुग्रीव ने वानरों को दक्षिण दिशा को भेजा तथा उनको आदेश दिया कि बड़े-बड़े नागों से सेवित रमणीय नर्मदा नदी, सुरम्य गोदावरी, महानदी, कृष्णवेणी तथा बड़े-बड़े नागों से सेवित महाभागा वरदा आदि नदियों के तटों पर और मेखल (मेकल), उत्कल और दशार्ण देश के नागों में तथा आव्रवन्ती और अवनीपुरी में भी सब जगह सीताजी की खोज करो॥8-9॥

और इसी इकतालीसवें सर्ग, श्लोक 39 में लिखा है -

सर्पराजो महाप्राज्ञो यस्यां वसति वासुकिः।
निर्याय मार्गितव्या च सा च भोगवती पुरी॥39॥

अर्थात् - उस भोगवती पुरी में महाविद्वान् सर्पराज (नागराज) वासुकि निवास करते हैं (ये योगशक्ति से अनेक रूप धारण करके दोनों भोगवती पुरियों में एक साथ रह सकते हैं)। तुम विशेष रूप से उस भोगवती* पुरी में प्रवेश करके वहां सीताजी की खोज करो॥39॥

  • यह पाताल (अमेरिका) की भोगवती पुरी से भिन्न है।

जाट वीरों का इतिहास: दलीप सिंह अहलावत, पृष्ठान्त-240

रामायणकाल में नागवंश की भारतवर्ष में बड़ी शक्ति थी। पुराणों की कथा अनुसार सम्पूर्ण क्षत्रियों को परास्त करने वाले परशुराम को इन अपराजित नागवंशियों से संधि करनी पड़ी थी और ब्राह्मणों को आज्ञा दी गई थी कि तुम नागों का आदर करो।

महाभारतकाल में भी नागवंशियों का पाताललोक (अमेरिका) के अतिरिक्त भारतवर्ष के अनेक स्थानों पर अधिकार था। महाभारत आदिपर्व में इन नाग क्षत्रियों का पाण्डवों के साथ युद्ध का वर्णन है। कौरवों की ओर से पाण्डवों को राजधानी बनाने के लिए खाण्डव वन मिल गया, जहां पर नागवंश की प्रसिद्ध शाखा तक्षक जाति (जाट) के राजा का अधिकार था। इन नाग लोगों ने श्रीकृष्ण एवं अर्जुन का बड़ी वीरता से सामना किया। अर्जुन ने इस वन के चारों ओर आग लगा दी। जब खाण्डव वन जलाया जा रहा था, उस समय महाबली नागराज तक्षक कुरुक्षेत्र चला गया था। परन्तु उसका बलवान् पुत्र अश्वसेन वहीं रह गया था जो आग से बच गया था। अर्जुन इस वन को जलाने में कामयाब हुआ1। तक्षकराज यहां से पराजित होकर अपने वंशजों के साथ, तक्षशिला को राजधानी बनाकर वहां बस गया। वा० रा० उत्तरकाण्ड, सर्ग 101 में लिखा है कि “भरत ने गन्धर्वों को जीतकर गन्धर्वदेश में तक्षशिला नामक नगरी बसाकर अपने पुत्र तक्ष को वहां का राजा बनाया।”

इस पराजय के कारण ही नागवंशी तक्षकों ने दुर्योधन की ओर होकर पाण्डवों के विपक्ष में युद्ध किया। इसके पश्चात् तक्षकों ने अर्जुनपौत्र परीक्षित का उसी के महल में वध कर दिया। तब परीक्षित के पुत्र जनमेजय ने तक्षशिला पर आक्रमण कर तक्षकों को काफी हानि तो पहुंचाई किन्तु उनको पूरी तरह से नष्ट न कर सका। (महाभारत आदिपर्व अध्याय 226वां)

“हार्मसवर्थ हिस्ट्री ऑफ वर्ल्ड” नामक पुस्तक के आधार पर “नामवीर आदि जन्म भूमि” बंगला पुस्तक से यह सिद्ध हुआ है कि अमेरिका में कई जातियों में अभी तक नागपूजा जारी है। पौराणिक युग से प्रचलित ‘नागपंचमी’ उतनी ही सुप्रसिद्ध हो गई जितनी कि रामनवमी और कृष्ण जन्माष्टमी हैं।

पाण्डव चन्द्रवंशी अपने को नाग लोगों से बड़ा मानकर उनकी लड़कियों को तो ब्याह लेते थे परन्तु उनको अपनी लड़कियां नहीं देते थे। इसका प्रमाण यह है कि श्रीकृष्ण महाराज की आठ रानियों में से तीन नागवंश की थीं। ययातिपुत्र यदु की महारानी नागवंश की थी। अर्जुन ने नागवंश के कौरव्य की पुत्री नागिन उलूपी से गन्धर्व विवाह करके उससे बड़ा शक्तिशाली ‘इरावान’ नामक पुत्र उत्पन्न किया (महाभारत आदिपर्व, अध्याय 95)। आस्तीक ऋषि की माता नागवंशज थी। वायु पुराण 99/36 के अनुसार नागवंशज नवनाग आदि सात राजाओं ने पद्मावती, कान्तिपुरी, और मथुरा पर शासन किया। कुषाणशक्ति के अस्त और गुप्तों के उदय से पूर्व नागशक्ति शैव धर्मानुयायी रूप से पुनः उदित हुई। इस समय ये लोग शिवजी का अलंकार नाग (सांप) अपने गले में लिपटाकर रखने लगे थे। इन नवोदित नागवंशियों ने शिवलिंग को स्कन्ध पर धारण कर शिवपूजा की एक नई परम्परा स्थापित की थी। अतः इनका नाम भारशिव प्रसिद्ध हो गया। इस नाम को स्पष्ट करनेवाला एक लेख बालाघाट में मिला है। इसका उल्लेख ‘एपिग्राफिका

1. महाभारत आदिपर्व, अध्याय 226वां।

जाट वीरों का इतिहास: दलीप सिंह अहलावत, पृष्ठान्त-241

इण्डिया’ भाग 1 पृष्ठ 269 तथा ‘फ्लीट गुप्त इन्स्क्रिप्शन्स’ 245 में इस प्रकार किया है -

“शिवलिंग का भार ढोने से जिन्होंने शिव को भलीभांति सन्तुष्ट कर लिया था, जिन्होंने अपने पराक्रम से प्राप्त की हुई भागीरथी गंगा के पवित्र जल से राज्याभिषेक कराया और जिन्होंने दश अश्वमेध यज्ञ करके अवभृथ स्नान किया था, इस प्रकार उन ‘भारशिव’ महाराजाओं का राजवंश प्रारम्भ हुआ।”

भारत कलाभवन काशी में एक पुरानी मनुष्य की मूर्ति भी रक्खी है जिसके कन्धे पर शिवलिंग है। इन्होंने देशभर में स्थान-स्थान पर अपने केन्द्र स्थापित करके दश अश्वमेध यज्ञ किए, जिनकी स्मृति में काशी में दशाश्वमेध घाट का निर्माण कराया। ‘अश्वमेधयाजी’ ‘परमविजयी’ पद प्राप्त करके भी वैदिक प्रथा के अनुसार दूसरे राज्यों को नष्ट नहीं किया परन्तु उनसे टैक्स (कर) लिया।

इण्डियन एंटीक्वेरी जिल्द 14, पृ० 45 पर लिखा है कि शेरगढ़ (कोटा राज्य) के द्वार पर नागवंशज राजाओं का शिलालेख, 15 जनवरी 791 ई० का खुदवाया हुआ मिला है जिसने उस स्थान पर विन्दुनाग, पद्मनाम, सर्वनाग, देवदत्त नामक चार नाग नरेशों का शासन होना सिद्ध होता है।

इन नागवंशी जाटों का राज्य कान्तिपुर, मथुरा, पद्मावती, कौशाम्बी, अहिक्षतपुर, नागपुर, चम्पावती (भागलपुर), बुन्देलखण्ड तथा मध्यप्रान्त पश्चिमी मालवा, नागौर (जोधपुर) पर रहा। इनके अतिरिक्त शेरगढ़ कोटा राज्य की प्राचीन भूमि पर, मध्यप्रदेश में चुटिया, नागपुर, खैरागढ़, चक्रकोटय एवं कवर्धा में भी इस वंश का राज्य था। महाविद्वान् महाराजा भोज परमार (जाट) की माता शशिप्रभा नागवंश की कन्या थी। राजस्थानी महासन्त वीरवर तेजा जी (धौल्या गोत्री जाट) का अपनी बहादुर पत्नी बोदल समेत एक बालू नामक नागवंशी वीर से युद्ध करते हुए ही प्राणान्त हुआ था। वहीं पर वीर तेजा जी की समाधि बनी हुई है। आज भी राजस्थान में इस वंश के जाटों की संख्या अधिक है। उत्तरप्रदेश जि० बदायूं में रम्पुरिया, खुदागंज, धर्मपुर, जि० बुलन्दशहर के अहार गांव में नागवंशी जाट हैं। यह ‘अहार’ वही प्राचीन गांव है जहां कि दुर्योधन द्वारा विष खिलाकर अचेत भीमसेन को गंगा में फेंक दिया गया था, जिसे नागवंशियों ने बचा लिया था।

उपर्युक्त को पढकर पाठकों को समझ लेना चाहिए कि नागवंशी सर्प इत्यादि जन्तु नहीं हैं बल्कि वास्तव में ये मनुष्य हैं। नाग जाटवीर आर्यों का वह वंश है जो अपने तीव्र विष जैसे क्रोध, तेज, पराक्रम, प्रताप, सौन्दर्य, विद्या और वैभव के कारण भारतवर्ष के क्षत्रिय इतिहास में सुप्रसिद्ध रहा है।

नागवंश के शाखागोत्र - 1. वसाति या वैस 2. तक्षक 3. औलक 4. कलकल 5. काला कालीधामन }कालखण्डे 6. मीठा 7. भारशिव 8. भराईच

The Naga Rulers of the North and Central India

Dr Naval Viyogi
This content is from Chapter-12 of Dr Naval Viyogi's Book - "Nagas: the Ancient Rulers of India, p.330-336

Nagas of Vidisa

[p.330]: The Nagas were serpent worshipping non-Aryaan civilized race of ancient India. Many localities and cities were named after them e.g. Nagpur, Nagardhan (Nagar-Vardhan), Nagar, Karkotnagar Nagarkhonda, Nagarkot, Nagarkoil etc. They flourished in North, East, Central and South India in ancient time. The evidences from the Puranas and other sources show that the Naga kings ruled at Takshila, Tankshar, Singhpur, Tonk, Mathura,Karkotanagar, Mathura, Indaurpura, Padmavati, Kantipuri, Vidisa, Purika, Nagpura, Nandi-Vardhan, Eran, Paithan, etc. In Mahabharata period these Nagas were ruling in North West with their capital at Takshila and at Patalpuri around present Karachi and Hyderabad. From tl1ere they drifted to south and east i.e. from the Panjab to Rajasthan and Madhya Pradesh in a time which cannot be ascertained now. The Puranas l divide the Naga dynasty of Vidisa into two parts: To the first part belonged those kings who flourished before the end of the Sungas with their capital at Vidisa. (31 B.C.). The Kings before this period in the Naga dynasty were Sesha, Bhogin, Ramchandra, Nakhvan, Dhanavarman or Dharma Varnan and Vangara.

At this period the Andhra Kings '2' had taken Susarman (The, last Kanva King) a prisoner and destroyed whatever had been left of the Sunga power at at time (at Vidisa). This statement of Puranas refer to the Andhra or Satavahana period, when they became emperors of Aryavarta in addition to their being the emperors of Dakshinapath at about 31 B.C. 3 It means, perhaps due to pressure from Satavahanas they shifted their capital to Padmavati.

Before proceeding further let us see how the Vayu Purana has called these Vidisa Nagas, Vrisha or Siva's bull i.e. Nandi, with which, the names of the kings coming after the close of the Sunga dynasty, end. It seems that the title Bharsiva which was taken up later is connected conceptually with the Vrisha of the Vayu and the Nandi. 4 It means these Nagas were ethnically5 related to Bharsivas or Nav Nagas (Taka a family

Foot notes:-

1.Mahajan V.D., "Ancient India" P-377.

2.Jayaswal KP. "History of India" P-9.

3.JBORS I P-1l6.

4.Jayaswal KP. P-lO.

5.Jayaswal K.P. P-18.

[p.331]: of Panjab see Chapter VI P-144 of later priod. We know Indus Valley people were also worshipers of God Siva. 6

The second part of these Nagas belonged to those kings who flourished after the end of the Sungas. The names of these post Sunga Nagas were Bhuta Nandi or Bhutinandi, Sisunandi and Yasonandi. It appears that from the time of Bhutanandi, when the dynasty was reestablished, they made Padmavati their capital. There is a positive confirmation of the existence of these post Sunga Nagas in the first century A.D. At Padmpawaya, which is the site of Padmavati, a statue of Yaksha Manibhadra was dedicated by some members of a public body in the fourth year of the reign of "King Svami Sivanandi"7. Similarly a famous Sivalingam called Swarn-Vindu was also established there. The plat form of the Swarn-Vindu Siva has been discovered by Mr. Garde at Pavaya. 8 An image of Nandi, with human body and Bull's head has been found there .

Let us take series of coins which according to Jayaswaal9 belongs to this early Naga dynasty. Some of the Coins are generally assigned to Mathura. In the British Museum there are coins of Seshadata, Ramdata and Sisuchandra-data. The script of the Seshadata's coin is the oldest and belongs to the first century B.C. In the same series, there are coins of Ramadata. These coins, according to the opinion of Jayaswal, are identical with Sesha-Naga, Ram-chandra and Sisu Nandi of this dynasty.

As the Puranas generally omit the names when a dynast comes under an over Lordship, Shiva nandi was probably the king superseded by Kanishka. It is stated in the Puranas that Padmavati passe under a ruler named Vinvasphani, who is to be identified with the viceroy of Kanishka, Mahakshatrapa Vanaspara.11 It proves that during the period 80-175 AD comes the Kushana rule with the withdrawal of the Naga Kings to Purika and Nagpur-Nandi-Vardhana in the central provinces. 12

After a lot of discussion K.P. Jayaswal gave the following pedigree and chronology of the Nagas of Vidisa :

(1) Sesha Naga 110-90 BC

(2) Bhogin 90-80 BC

(3) Ramachandra 80-50 BC

(4) Dharma Varman 50-40 BC

(5) Vangara 40-31 BC

Kings (S.No. 1-5) ruled at Vidisa before the end of the Sungas

At this time Satavahanas destroyed Sunga Kanvas.

(6) Bhuta Nandi 20-10 BC

(7) Sisu Nandi 10 BC-25 AD

(8) Yash Nandi 25-~0 AD

Kings (S.No. 6-8) ruled at Padmavati after the end of Sungas

Foot notes -

6.Rao S.R., "Lothal and the Indus civilization" P-190.

7.ASR 1915-16 P-106 Plate LXI.

8.ASR 1915-16 PP-lOO FF.

9.Jayaswal KP. P-12.

10.ASR Vol XII P-43.

11.Jayaswal KP. poll.

12.Jayaswal K.P. P-14.


(9) Purusha data

(10) Uttam data

(11) Kama data

(12) Bhava data

(13) Siva Nandi or Sivadata 78 AD. superseded by Kushanas

These five kings (S.No. 9-13) are known from the inscriptions & coins and their order of succession is also uncertain.

Jayaswal has pointed out that last five kings are known only from inscriptions and coins. Their order of succession is also uncertain. All the 13 Naga Kings covered a period of about 200 years from 110 BC to 78 AD. 13

The Nava Naga or Bharsiva

Yaksha reliefs. Bharhut, 2nd century BCE.
View of Bharhut stupa in ruins and in the back ground is Bharhut hill
Yaksha relief at Bharhut being worshipped as Hanuman

The Nagas had, under the evident pressure of the Kushanas left Padmavati. We have the definite statement in the Puranas that Vinvasphani ruled at Padmavati and ruled upto Magadha. 14 Therefore, we may take it that about 80-100 AD the Naga dynasty takes shelter, away from the trunk road between Mathura and Vidisa, into the inner jungles of the central provinces. 15

The Bharsivas, re-issuing from the jungles of Hoshangabad and Jabalpur seem to have reached the Ganges through Baghelkhand. They established their capital at Kanti or Kantipuri. 16 Now it is a large mud fort about a mile long on the Ganges. The fort was destroyed in the muslim period and the king's seat was removed into the neigbouring hills at Vijaypur and an Manda, where the family, now in two branches: resides. The local tradition at Kanti is that long before 'the Gahadwala' the fort belonged originally to the Bhar Kings. The 'Bhar' kings here are evidently a corruption of the 'Bharsiva' kings 17 or Bharshiva.

The origin of the word 'Bharhut' or 'Bharhut' would have been from 'Bhar-Bhukti', which means 'country of Bhars'. 18 Till today-the people of Bhar tribes reside in this region, who seem to be the remnants Of 'Bhar Naga tribe' to which ruling family belonged. Jayaswal does not agree to this view, but I am Its strong supporter: in view of new archaeological findings and their scientific interpretation, as glven in previous chapters. However some evidences are produced below: It is to be noted, that in ancient period, the indigenous Naga people in particular used to organize themselves into guilds. (See chapter VI PP 124-25) As the system in origin l9, was a tribal evolution, hence guild's people and their elders or chiefs (Khalifah, or Sresthis) infact were from a single blood. These Khalifah or Sresthis in later, Mauryan period were known as kings. These kings, some times later, became more powerful and hereditary too, who being non-Aryan Kshatriyas, were known as Raj-putra or Rajputs of medieval period. 20 Sometimes this period of evolution,from tribe to royal Rajput family, is very long and uncountable. One person,

Foot notes -

13. Jayaswal KP.-15.

14.V.P. (Wilson) II P-659.

15.Jayaswal KP. P-16.

16.Jayaswal KP. P-29.



19.(a) Jayaswal KP. "Hindu Polity" P-46 ..

(b) Bhandarkar D.R. "Lecture on the Ancient History of India" PP-169-70.

20.Katyayan comments on Panini IV -1-168.



Nagas, the Ancient Rulers of India, their Origin and History 363

[p.333]: belonging to the same blood or tribe became kig. others who were pushed to Jungles or hills still remained tribe. Some of the Bhars and the Rajbhars of this region (U.P.) still known as Rajputs 21 others are still Sudras by caste. Hence Jayaswal cannot say that Bhar tribes of this region cannot be blood relatives of royal families of Manda and and Vijayapur.

Another argument of Jayaswal goes in my favour. He says. "The Bhar Deul Siva's temple, as indicated by learned scholar is covered all over with the figures of naga (serpent) kings. As recorded by Kittoe in whose time it was called the temple of KarKota Nag" . ThiS evidently supports this view that the Bhar here stands for Bharsivas. 22 This is to be noted that Karkota Nag was worshipped by the Takas 23, who were progenitor of Bharsivas. These Takas or Takka or Takshak Nagas according to the Mahabharata account were non-Aryan Native Naga tribe and sworn enemies ot Aryan Pandavas {See chapter VI P-144 and X P-261 for detail .

Re-establishment of Nagas

Naga temple at Chinta (Bhadarvah), Courtesy:Vogel JPH
Naga sculptures, Courtesy;Fergusson James

The Bharsivas, in the later days of imperial Kushanas or about 150 A.D. reached Kantipur on the Ganges, they performed there Ashwamedha and coronations at or near Banaras where is located the place known as Nagwa, the present site of the Hindu University seems to be associated with their name. From Kantipur, they moved westwards under Virasena, who strikes coins extensively and whose coins are found from Ahichchhatra, regains Padmavati and Mathura.

It is stated in the Vayu and Brahmand Puranas that rule of Navanaga was not only confined to SamayuktaPrant alone but also to the east and the western Bihar also because their capital was in Mathura as well as in Champavati-Bhagalpur. 25 The Puranas, give to the Padmavati and the Mathura Nagas or in view of the Vishnu, to the Padmavati, Kantipuri-Mathura Nagas,-seven successions. This is fully borne out by the names gathered from the coins and inscriptions as tabulated below after Jayaswal :

Bharsivas Rise at Kantipuri (140 A.D.)

  • Nava Naga (year 27 on his coin) ..... Founders of the Nava Naga Dynasty (Bharsiva) 040-170 AD)
Padmavati Kantipuri Mathura
(Taka Dynasty) (Bharsiva Dynasty) (Yadu dynasty)
210-230 AD 210-245 Haya Naga name unknown
Bhima Naga (years 30 on coin)

Foot notes -

21. Sherring Rev M.A.; Hindu Tribes and Castes. PP 357-73.

22. Jayaswal KP., "History of India' P-30.

23. Jayaswal KP. P-39.

24. Jayaswal KP. P-31.

25. Jayaswal KP. P-32.


Padmavati Kantipuri Mathura
230-250 AD 245-250 name unknown
Skanda Naga Traya Naga
250-270 AD 250-260 name unknown
Brahaspati Naga Barhina Naga (years 7 on coin)
[Vakataka Suzerainty begins 284 AD]
270-290 AD 260-290 ....
Vyaghra Naga Charaja Naga (year 30 on coin)
290-310 AD 290-315 AD 315-340 AD
Deva Naga Bhava Naga Kiritsena
310-344 Ad (315-344 AD) 340-344 AD
ganapati Naga Rudrasena at Purika Naga Sena

According to Vakataka 26 inscriptions (Fleet G I. PP-237)

Gautamiputra, son of the Emperor Pravarsena an ather of Rudrasena I, did not succeed, but Rudrasena I, both as the grand-son of Pravarsena and as the gran son of the Bharsiva-Maharaja Bhavnag, succeeded. The Nava Naga ruled from three capitals Padmavati, Mathura and Kantipuri. But Rudrasena I ruled from Purika.

Sometimes before Samudragupta, (335-375 AD) the Naga kings were ruling over Eran. As,27 Padmavati, Kantlpuri and Mathura were three centres of their rule>, the Eran- Vidisa was fourth. Naga coins have been recovered in a very large number from this region. All these four kingdoms were inter-related with each other and perrhaps, they all unitedly encountered the attacks of Kushanas and Scythians and pushed them back from their motherland. These Naga kings were great warriors. According to Cunningham, from the lonly finding of a coin, from the remains of Eran, we get information from its writing, which is in Brahmi, that ancients name of the City was 'Erikiran' which was most porobable named after some famous Naga King of similarr name. 28 The coins of Ravli- Naga, Basu-Naga and Ganapati-Nagas have been recovered in a very large number from Vidisa and Eran.

Bharsivas of Padmavati; A confederacy of Naga Rulers of North

We have already thrown light in Chapter V and VI (PP - 132-33) that the basis of Naga polity was tribal republican confederacy or Gan Sangha system very similar to that of Sumerian. 29

Foot notes -

26. Jayaswal KP. P-17.

27. Jayaswal KP .. P-15.

28. Bajpai Atima, "Madhyapradesh Ke Nagbanshi Sikke" PP 115-17.

29. Hawkes Jacquetta, 'The First Great Civilization" PP 160-161.

[p.335]: We know that the West Asia was original home of Nagas from where this tradition was transferred to Indus Valley along with their migration in Neolithic-Chalcolithic Age and was prevalent among the native people in Vedic and later Vedic period.

During the life time of Buddha and later period there were many such confederacies of Naga people in North as well as in South India such as Malava-Kshudraka, Andhaka-Vrishani, Vaishali-Videha, Videha-Lichchhavi, Lichchavi-Malla, Vujji, Trigarttashashtha 30 (in north and west), Naga (chera) Mandal in south.

Jayaswael31 KP gives an account of political organization of Bharsivas as follows -

"The system of the Naga government was a federation consisting of (1) tree mam monarchial Naga families, one of which, the Bharasiva, was the imperial leader (chief), with a number of gubernatorial families under him, (2) a number of republics. Two branches at Padmavati and Mathura were set up by the Bharsivas, with distinguishing dynastic titles of their own. The Padmavati dynasty had the official designation the Taka Bansha, which is given in the Bhavasataka a book dedicated to Ganapati-Naga. The Mathura family had the official title-the Yadu-Bansha which is mentioned in the drama Kaumudimahotsava writtten about the same time as the Bhavasataka. The two titles incidentally furnish ethnological data of the Nava Nagas .... Padmavati family was thus a sovereign family, and their subordination to the Bharsiva was evidently of an Imperial type. The Mathura family and the family to which Nagadatta (father of Maharaja Mesvara Naga of the Lahore seal) beelonged and who ruled somewhere in Ambala district probably at the old capital Shrughna, seem to have been under the direct control of the Bharsiva. There was a ruling family near Indrapura (Indorkhera) in the district of Bulandshahar. As regards Bharsivas they had their two centres, Kantipuri and Padmavati. The Mathura family never minted any coin but the Padmavati family did so from the beginning to the end. They were thus a sovereign family." It is obvious Bharsivas were racially -Yadavas and of Taka Bansha . Political confederacy system was their peculiarity.

An Invincible and Prosperous Confederacy

We have earlier (Chapter-VI PP 133-34) told that the Nagas were great warriors, that is why they pushed back Kushanas and Scythians from Northern India. The sworn enemy of these non-Aryan republicans, Kautilya 32 has expressed his view that these republicans were invincible. K. P. Jayaswal also puts forth his remarks on this issue 33 - "The other chief feature of their (republican) constitution was that they emphasized on their citizens the duty to acquire military skill. In other words they

Foot notes -

30. Jayaswal KP. "Hindu Polity" PP 38, 50-52, 54-55.

31. Jayaswal KP., "History of India" PP 33-34.

32. Jayaswal KP., "Hindu Polity" P-119.

33. Jayaswal KP., "Hindu Polity" PP-54-55.

[p.336]: had a citizen army. Each state was a nation-in-arms. Conversely, the other class, where the 'king' consul constitution obtained, probably had, like monarchs a regular or hired army. The nation-in-arms class, however, did not become purely military, for their constitution also required their citizens to devote attention to industry and agriculture (VĀRTIĀSASTROPAJIVINAH, A.S. XI-I-160 P-376). Hence they were most wealthy as well as powerful" It shows while in peace, citizens were kept engaged in craft activities and trade which was their main occupation.

Padmavati; the Capital of Bharsivas

There is a small village named Karavati, situated on the Dabra (Distt-Gwalior) Shivpuri road. At a distance of 10 K.M. to the west of this village at the junction of rivers Sindh and Parvati (Sindhu and Para) the ancient grand City of Padmavati 34 was situated. Now-a-days this place is known as Pavaya or Padam Pavāya. It is very interesting to note that during the rainy season, a very large number of coins belonging to the Naga rulers appear at the surlace.35 These coins have made the historians enable to identify this ancient Naga city. The first mention of this city as Padmavati, is made in the Vishnupurana 36, where it is stated that the Nava-Nagas made, Padmavati, Kantipuri and Mathura their capitals and ruled for seven generations. 37

Bhavabhuti 38 has stated that 'Padmavati is situated near the junction of the rivers Sindhu, Para' Lavana and Madhumati. Later following the information given by M.B Lele 39 in his Marathi book titled 'Malatimadhava sar ani kiwar', the Department of Archaeology discovered this ancient site. According to a critical study of coins, Virsena was the founder of the kingdoms of Padmavati and Mathura.

Nava Nagas founded a large mint in Padmavati, from where coins were issued in a very large number, on the basis of which it is surmised that the Navanagas, in addition to their high virtues of being most expert and talented rulers, were also most prosperous. One of the well known peculiarities of Naga coins is that they are all dated. They have figures of palm trees and a human figure seated on a throne. 40The palm tree is a Naga symbol. Since Sanskrit word for mint is Tak-shala [[[Taka]] (Bharsiva) + Shala] this shows these Taka-Bharsiva had some hand in establishing new technique or workshop of casting of coins.

The demolished remains of strong fort on the junction of the rivers still give a reminiscent view. From the defence point of view, because it, was surrounded by in-exhaustable flow of river water from two sides and, on the other two sides by deep trenches, it was most safe and invincible. The trenches were 20 feet deep and were occupied by either furious lions or river water. The traces of these trenches are still visible.41

Foot notes -

34. ASR (1915-16) P-103.

35. ASR (1915-16) P-105.

36. V.P. (Wilson) II P-659.

37. Jayaswal KP. - "History of India" PP 20-21 and 35.

38. ASR (1915-16) P-102.

39. ASR (1915-16) P-103.

40. (a) Jayswal KP. PP 20-27. (b) Smith V.A., "Coins of Indian Museum" P-191.

41. ASR 1915-16 P-lOO Footnote.

[p.337]: Bhavabhuti 42, the famous Sanskrit poet of seventh century A. D. composed his valuable scripture, at Padmavati. Bhavabhuti got constructed a large Yajnashala (sacrificial lace) at the bank of river Paravati, its remains are still in good condition.


In about 175 or 180 A.D., we find a Naga king named Virasena reestablirtiing Naga sovereignty at Mathura. According to Dr. Jayaswal,43 the rise of Virasena was a turning point not only in the Naga history but also in the history of Aryavarta. His coins have been found in Northern India, almost all over Uttar Pradesh and in the Punjab. They are most common around Mathura. He occupied Mathura and ruled all over the Aryavarta Doab. An inscription of Virasena was discovered by Sir Richhard Burn. There are a number of broken sculptures and carved pieces and the inscription is on the head and mouth of a sculptured animal.44 The inscription is dated in the 13th year of the reign of Svamin Virasena. Virasena 45 assumed full sovereignty from the first year of his reign. It appears that he ousted the Kushanas from Mathura and the whole of the Doab between the Ganga and the Yamuna. Virasena had a fairly long reign and according to Dr. Jayaswal he ruled from about 170 A.D. to 210 A.D. The same writer is of the opinion that 'The intimate connection between his coins and coins of the undoubted Bharasiva king, the Naga emblem on his coins as if to complete his name, the period of his rise and his establishing himself at Mathura mark Virasena out as one of the earliest Bharasiva Nagas of the inscriptions and the Nava Nagas of the Puranas.'

Bhava Naga

According to Jayaswal,46 there were four kings after Virasena. Haya Naga, Traya Naga, Brahina Naga, Charaja Naga. Bhava Naga ruled from about 290 to 315 A.D. Dr. Jayaswal made it clear that he had fixed the date of Bhava Naga on a consideration of the Vakataka and Gupta chronology. Bhava Naga was a contemporary of Pravarsena I who was an elder contemporary of Samudra Gupta. Bhava Naga is described as belonging to, the family of the Bharasivas 47 whose royal line owed its origin to the great satisfaction of Siva that was caused by their carrying a Sivalinga placed as a load upon their shoulder" and "who were besprinkled on the forehead with the pure water of the Bhagirathi that had been obtained by their valour. "

Foot notes -

42. ASR 1915-16 P-lOl.

43. Jayaswal KP. P-19.

44. Jayaswal KP.-21.

45. Jayaswal KP.-23.

46. Jayaswal KP. P-27.

47. Jayaswal KP. P-17.

Nāgas in Hindu religion

A festival of Nāga panchami is celebrated in Hindus to pay respect to Nāgas. The five Nāgas worshipped on Nāga panchami are Ananta, Vāsuki, Taxak, Karkotaka and Pingala. According to a Puranic myth Brahma’s son Kashyapa had four wives. Kashyapa’s first wife gave birth to Devas, second to Garudas, third to Nagas and fourth to Daityas. (Dainik Jagran, 25 July 2006). The third wife of Kashpa was called Kadroo, who gave birth to Nāgas. So Nāgas are also known as Kadroojā. They were the rulers of Pātāl-Loka. There is a Sanskrit shloka to remember important nine Nāgas as under: (Dainik Bhaskar 30 July 2006)

अनन्तं वासुकिं शेषं पद्मनाभं च कम्बलम् । Anantam Vāsukim Shesham Padmanābham cha Kambalam

शंखपालं धार्तराष्ट्रं तक्षकं कालियं तथा ।। Shankhapālam Dhārtarāshtram Taxakam Kāliyam tathā

एतानि नवनामानि च महात्मनाम् । Etāni navanāmāni cha mahātmanām

Nagas in Mahabharata

The Mahabharata Book 2: SECTION IX Sabha Parva Kisari Mohan Ganguli, tr.1883-1896 mentions names of following naga kings who attended the Sabha of Yudhishthira:

Vasuki and Takshaka, and the Naga called Airavata; Krishna and Lohita; Padma and Chitra endued with great energy; the Nagas called Kamvala and Aswatara; and Dhritarashtra and Valahaka; Matimat and Kundadhara and Karkotaka and Dhananjaya; Panimat and the mighty Kundaka, O lord of the Earth; and Prahlada and Mushikada, and Janamejaya,--all having auspicious marks and mandalas and extended hoods;--these and many other snakes. These have been described from shloka 8 to 11 as under:

वासुकिस तक्षकश चैव नागश चैरावतस तदा
कृष्णशलॊहितश चैव पद्मश चित्रश च वीर्यवान ।।8।।
कम्बलाश्वतरौ नागौ धृतराष्ट्र बलाहकौ
मणिमान कुण्डलधरः कर्कॊटक धनंजयौ ।।9।।
परह्लाथॊ मूषिकादश च तदैव जनमेजयः
पताकिनॊ मण्डलिनः फणवन्तश च सर्वशः ।।10।।
एते चान्ये च बहवः सर्पास तस्यां युधिष्ठिर
उपासते महात्मानं वरुणं विगतक्लमाः ।।11।।

Genealogy of Nāga kshatriyas

The list of rulers in the genealogy of Nāga kshatriyas, as provided by Kishori Lal Faujdar, is as under:

Shesha, Vāsuki, Arāwati, Taxak, Karkotak, Dhananjay, Kāliya, Manināth, Āyūraṇa, (Pauniya), Pinjarak, Alāwat, Vāman, Nīl, Anīl, Kalmāsha, Shabal, Āryak, Ugrak Kalash, Pok, Sumand, Dīghamukh, Nimal Pindak, Shankh, Bāl Shiv, Vishtāvak, Imeguh, Nahush, Pingal, Bahya Varṇa, Hastipad, Mundar, Pindak, Karal, Ashwatar, Kālīshak, Pahal, Tūn Danvartak, Shankhamukh, Kushmāndak, semak, Chindāraka, Karvīr, Pushpadand, Vilvak, Pāndhūr, Mūshakād, Shankhasirā, Pūrṇāmadra, Haridraka, Aparājita, Jotika, Pannaga, Srāvaha, Kauravya, Dhritarashtra, Shankhapind, Virjā, Suvahu, Shālipinda, Haritpinda, Pithraka, Sumukha, Koṇaya, Dashan, Kuthara, Kunjar, Prabhākara, Kusad, Halak, Kumudāksha, Tittar, Mahāsarpa, Kadanma, Bahumūlaka, Karkara, Kundaudara, Mahodara.

Nagavanshi kings in Mahabharata

Mahabharata counts following more Naga clans – Ahi, Shivatra, (Khet) Ashit, Serbhak, Sevridha, Astin, Kantat, Spaj, Anat, Kulik, Shankhapāl, Darvī, Achāswa, Ajgar, Āligī, Vilagī, Orīvisha, Karikrat, Kasṇīnla, Tirashcha Raji, Naimarat, Prīdākū, Prīdāmī, Rajju, Lohitāhī, Ratharvī, Vāhas, Serbhā.

The Nagavanshi kings had a symbol of Naga or serpent on their coins and flags. The coins of Nagavanshi rulers are still found at village Āhār in Bulandshar district in Uttar Pradesh. These coins depict symbols of Nagas on them. There is mention of Nagas in Mahabharata in a story in which Duryodan poisoned Bhima to kill and threw into Ganga River. When he was foating inriver he reached village Āhār where the Nagavanshi rulers took him out from Ganga River and gave treatment to cure. After treatment he was sent to Hastinapur.

The names of the principal Naga Chiefs in Mahabharata

Mahabharata (1,35) (Birth of Nagas) - the name of principal Naga chiefs were mentioned as[26]:-

Sesha (Naga Ananta) was the foremost, and then Vasuki. Then were born Airavata, Takshaka, Karkotaka (linked with Nala, king of Nishadha), Dhananjaya, Kalakeya (was also mentioned as an Asura clan), the serpent Mani, Purana, Pinjaraka, and Elapatra, Vamana, Nila, Anila, Kalmasha, Savala, Aryaka, Ugra, Kalasapotaka, Suramukha, Dadhimukha, Vimalapindaka, Apta, Karotaka, Samkha, Valisikha, Nisthanaka, Hemaguha, Nahusha (Nahusha was also described as a king in the Lunar Dynasty; Pururavas (first king of Lunar dynasty) -> Ayus - > Nahusha), Pingala, Vahyakarna, Hastipada, Mudgarapindaka, Kamvala Aswatara, Kaliyaka, Vritta, Samvartaka, Padma, Mahapadma, Sankhamukha, Kushmandaka, Kshemaka, Pindaraka, Karavira, Pushpadanshtraka, Vilwaka, Vilwapandara, Mushikada, Sankhasiras, Purnabhadra, Haridraka, Aparajita, Jyotika, Srivaha, Kauravya, Dhritarashtra (also mentioned as a Gandharva king), Sankhapinda, Virajas, Suvahu, Salipinda, Prabhakara, Hastipinda, Pitharaka, Sumuksha, Kaunapashana, Kuthara, Kunjara, Kumuda, Kumudaksha, Tittri, Halika, Kardama, Vahumulaka, Karkara, Akarkara, Kundodara, and Mahodara.

Mahabharata: At (5,103) (Matali's history) the name of principal Naga chiefs were mentioned as:-

Vasuki, Takshaka, Karkotaka, Dhanjaya, Kaliya (linked with river Yamuna and Krishna in the Mahābhārata, Nahusha (also a king belonging to Lunar Dynasty), Aswatara, Vakyakunda, Mani, Apurana, Khaga, Vamana, Elapatra, Kukura, Kukuna, Aryaka (linked with Bhima), Nandaka, Kalasa, Potaka, Kalilasaka, Pinjaraka, Airavata, Sumanmukha, Dadhimukha, Sankha, Nanda, Upanandaka, Apta, Kotaraka, Sikhi, Nishthuraka, Tittiri, Hastibhadra, Kumuda, Maylapindaka, the two Padmas, Pundarika, Pushpa, Mudgaraparnaka, Karavira, Pitharaka, Samvritta, Vritta, Pindara, Vilwapatra, Mushikada, Sirishaka, Dilipa, Sankha-sirsha, Jyotishka, Aparajita, Kauravya, Dhritarashtra, Kuhara, Krisaka, Virajas, Dharana, Savahu, Mukhara, Jaya, Vidhira, Andha, Visundi, Virasa, and Sarasa.

Mahabharata:At (14,4) (Last moments of Bala Rama) the name of principal Naga chiefs were mentioned as:-

Karkotaka and Vasuki and Takshaka and Prithusravas and Varuna and Kunjara, and Misri and Sankha and Kumuda and Pundarika, Dhritarashtra, and Hrada and Kratha and Sitikantha of fierce energy, and Chakramanda and Atishanda, Durmukha, and Amvarisha, and king Varuna

Mahabharata: At (1,65) (Genesis) the names of the sons of Kadru were mentioned as:-

Sesha or Ananta, Vasuki, Takshaka, Kumara, and Kulika are known to be the sons of Kadru.

Mahabharata: At (2,9) Nagas linked with Varuna were mentioned as:-

Vasuki, Takshaka, and the Naga called Airavata, Krishna and Lohita (see Lauhitya), Padma, Chitra], Kamvala, Aswatara, Dhritarashtra, Valahaka, Matimat, Kundadhara, Karkotaka, Dhananjaya, Panimat, Kundaka, Prahlada, Mushikada and Janamejaya wait upon Varuna. Many Asuras also is mentioned as waiting upon Varuna. Nagas, Daityas (a clan of Asuras), Sadhyas and inferior Devas were mentioned to follow Varuna (3,41).

Naga clan of Jats

According to historian Ram Swarup Joon, The facts about Nagas are different from those mentioned in brahmanical records. This dynasty belonged to Madrak Jat gotra of Yadav Vansh and was devotees of Shiva. They had a number of ruling dynasties such as Takshak Nag, Bachak Nag, Kilkil Nag, Karkotaka, Kaliramna etc all of which are Jat gotras. Mathura, Padmavati and Kantipur were capitals of Naga dynasty. Nagas of Padmavati were called Taank, which is also a Jat gotra, and are found in 24 villages near Sonipat.

In chapter 29 of "India of the Dark Ages" the ancestor of Tanks is mentioned as Raja Gajavaktra. In chapter 42 of the same book it is mentioned that Malla Jat Republic extended from Eastern Punjab to the Ganga and Yaudheya republic extended into Rajasthan. Nagpur belonged to the Nagas. Nagar Brahmins also originated from there.

The Pauranic prejudice in the story is understandable. The Jats who followed Buddhism were considered renegades and those who adopted Vaishnavism became staunch Hindus.

Naga gotra (clan) of Jats are found in Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh, Haryana and Punjab.

Distribution in Uttar Pradesh

Villages in Budaun district

Dharampur, Khudaganj, Khausara, Rampur Mazra,

Villages in Bulandshahr district

Ahar Bulandshahr,

Distribution in Haryana

Village Bilawal district Bhiwani.

Distribution in Rajasthan

Villages in Nagaur district

Nagwara Kalan (नगवाड़ा कलां), Nagwara Khurd (नगवाड़ा खुर्द), Deh,

Villages in Ajmer district


Villages in Alwar district

Chatarpura, Kekri,

Villages in Sikar district

Dantru (4), Dujod, Kanwarpura, Naga Ki Dhani, Rampura (Nathawatpura), Shyampura West, Sikar,

Villages in Tonk district

Naga (नागा) Jats live in the villages:

Banthali, Beejwar, Kookad (4), Miya ki Dhani (2), Pratappura Katwa (2), Surajpura (2),

Nag (नाग) Jats live in villages:

Keria (3), Morla (1), Bardla,

Villages in Udaipur district

Badgaon Bandh, Nagon Ka Khera, Ladana , Changedi

Villages in Jaipur district

Naga (नागा) Jats live in the villages: Bassinaga (50), Dhani Nagan, Nayagaon Chaksu (2), Kareda Khurd (1), Akhepura,

Villages in Chittorgarh district

Nagon Ka Khera, Nangpura @ Rathoron Ka Khera,

Villages in Sawai Madhopur district

Khijuri ,

Villages in Jaisalmer district

Naga (t.Jaisalmer), Nagon Ki Dhani (t.Jaisalmer),

Distribution in Madhya Pradesh

Villages in Dhar district


Villages in Khargone district


Villages in Ratlam district

Villages in Ratlam district with population of this gotra are:

Barbodana 2, Dheekwa 1, Piploda 10, Ratlam 5, Salakhedi 1,

Villages in Indore district

Atyana, Dudhia, Manpur, Sumatha,

Villages in Shajapur district

Tajpur Gauri,

Distribution in Punjab

Villages in Muktsar district

Villages in Sangrur district

Notable persons

  • Ram Avtar Jat (Naga) - Scientific Officer (D) BARC (DAE), Date of Birth : 1-June-1981, Permanent Address : Jat Villa, Behind Jagdishpura, Beawar Road, Kekri, Distt- Ajmer, Rajasthan-305404, Present Address : Jat Villa, Behind Jagdishpura, Beawar Road, Kekri,Distt-Ajmer, Rajasthan-305404, Phone: 9223316385, Mob: 9223316385, Email :
  • Govardhan Singh Naga - Advocate, Vil. Rampura Sikar, PO. Nathawatpura, ph.234074, mob-9352812370
  • Ch. Dhanpat Singh Nag - Resident village Deh in Nagaur district. He was warden of Kisan Chhatrawas Merta City during Baldev Ram Mirdha Campaign for spreading Education in Marwar.[27]

Gallery of Naga Jats

See also


  1. Jat History Dalip Singh Ahlawat/Parishisht-I, s.n. न-26
  2. Jat History Dalip Singh Ahlawat/Parishisht-I, s.n. न-3
  3. O.S.Tugania:Jat Samuday ke Pramukh Adhar Bindu,p.47,s.n. 1387
  4. Jat History Thakur Deshraj/Chapter IX,p.695
  5. Jat History Dalip Singh Ahlawat/Chapter IV, p.341
  6. Mahendra Singh Arya et al: Adhunik Jat Itihas, p. 259
  7. Corpus Inscriptionium Indicarium Vol IV Part 2 Inscriptions of the Kalachuri-Chedi Era, Vasudev Vishnu Mirashi, 1955, p.501-511
  8. Corpus Inscriptionium Indicarium Vol IV Part 2 Inscriptions of the Kalachuri-Chedi Era, Vasudev Vishnu Mirashi, 1905, p.611-617
  9. Ram Swarup Joon: History of the Jats/Chapter V,p. 95
  10. Tripāṭhī, Śrīdhara, ed. (2008). Encyclopaedia of Pali Literature: The Pali canon. 1. Anmol. p. 117. ISBN 9788126135608.
  11. Kings of Kashmira Vol 2 (Rajatarangini of Kalhana)/Book VIII (i) ,p.113
  12. Kings of Kashmira Vol 2 (Rajatarangini of Kalhana)/Book VIII (i) ,p.125-126
  13. Kings of Kashmira Vol 2 (Rajatarangini of Kalhana)/Book VIII (i) ,p.197
  14. Kings of Kashmira Vol 2 (Rajatarangini of Kalhana)/Book VIII (ii), p.245
  15. Kings of Kashmira Vol 2 (Rajatarangini of Kalhana)/Book VIII (ii) ,p.247
  16. Kings of Kashmira Vol 2 (Rajatarangini of Kalhana)/Book VIII (ii) ,p.261
  17. Kings of Kashmira Vol 2 (Rajatarangini of Kalhana)/Book VIII (ii) ,p.272
  18. Kings of Kashmira Vol 2 (Rajatarangini of Kalhana)/Book VIII (ii) ,p.273
  19. Kings of Kashmira Vol 2 (Rajatarangini of Kalhana)/Book VIII (ii) ,p.274
  20. Kings of Kashmira Vol 2 (Rajatarangini of Kalhana)/Book VIII (ii) ,p.275
  21. Kings of Kashmira Vol 2 (Rajatarangini of Kalhana)/Book VIII (ii),p.291
  22. Aitihasik Sthanavali by Vijayendra Kumar Mathur, p.256
  23. Thakur Deshraj: Jat Itihas (Utpatti Aur Gaurav Khand)/Shashtham Parichhed, p.127
  24. Jat History Dalip Singh Ahlawat/Chapter IV, p. 341
  25. जाट वीरों का इतिहास: दलीप सिंह अहलावत, पृष्ठा.238-242
  26. Adi Parva, Mahabharata/Mahabharata Book I Chapter 35
  27. Jat Samaj, May 2009, p.30

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