Wednesday, October 8, 2008


Dr. Nitish Priyadarshi
Breaking a tradition since the creation of Jharkhand state of India in 2000, Chief Minister Shibu Soren has refused to burn an effigy of demon king Ravana (king of ancient Sri Lanka), saying he was a "great scholar". In north India, Ravana's effigy is burnt on Vijay Dashmi festival , marking the end of Dusshera celebration and considered to symbolise victory of good over evil. "Soren declined to accept the invitation terming Ravana as Guru or teacher of his ancestors (Kulguru).Mr. Soren said how can one burn the effigy of Kulguru who is worshipped?" Since the creation of the state in November 2000, there was a tradition in Jharkhand that the chief minister sets the Ravana effigy on fire. Close associates of Soren say that Ravana and his forefathers were closely associated with the jungles of Jharkhand, Chhattisgarh and Madhya Pradesh.
Ravana was a Brahmin by caste and was revered by the people of the area. The term Ravana is a derogatory reference to him. His original name was Dasamukha which means bearer of ten heads. He plays a major role in Hindu mythology, especially in the Ramayana, where he is mainly depicted negatively as a brute and rapist, and most infamously as having kidnapped Rama's wife Sita and being killed by her husband. Ravana is also mentioned as a great scholar, a capable ruler and a devoted follower of Shiva, and he has his apologists and staunch devotees within the Hindu traditions.Recently a report was published in local news papers regarding finding air port build by the Ravana on the top of Trikoot Hills in Deogarh district of Jharkhand where Ravana used to visit for worshipping Lord Shiva.
According to other concept it is mentioned that the palace of Ravana was made of pure gold. Jharkhand was rich in gold deposits in ancient days. Probably gold used in the palace was brought from Jharkhand. So the palace must have been built here seeing the abundant presence of gold. People are still found panning gold from the sands of the local rivers after rainy season. At present many Indian news channels are searching the historical records of the Lord Ram and place of incidents in Ramayana in country of Sri Lanka as well as in India.
After the Ram Setu controversy many of us are showing interest regarding the existence of Lord Ram and his warriors. Recently I found an old research report in my Home Library. Report is regarding the site of the Lanka during the Ramayana age.
Report was published in the year 1971 in the National news paper dated 5/10/1971. According to the report Chotanagpur (Jharkhand State,India) was the Lanka of Ramayana. In other words Ravana lived in Jharkhand. Report has the opinion that the Ramayana belongs to early iron-age and the Lanka in the holy epic can not be the island of Ceylon (Lanka). According to report, the Lanka of the Ramayana was somewhere in the Chotanagpur Plateau (Ranchi and Hazaribag district) of Jharkhand State of India and the ´Vanaras´ and ´Raksasas´(demons) were the merely the Adivasis (tribe) of the area. Asurs were the early settlers in the Jharkhand. It was deduced from archaeological, geographical and botanical interpretation of the clues in the epics. The theory is that the story or the various incidents could have taken place in present Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Jharkhand Plateau and Eastern Madhya Pradesh as early as 1,500 B.C.Report sited excavations at Kausambi, Prahladpur, Chirand, Sonpur etc. to reveal the existence of a settled way of life about circa 2,000-1,500 B.C. These earlier cultures were destroyed or displaced by an iron-manufacturing people as is evident from archaeological findings at Mahisadal and Rajar-Dhipi.
In Ranchi district alone are found Asur forts and cemeteries. Over a hundred villages scattered through this region have Asur sites of this "long ancient people", who were thought by the Mundas(type of tribe) as a tall, huge limbed race of Herculean strength, having a much higher civilization. Asur graves are in irregular order and are marked by the slabs. The roof stones are generally 8 feet and sometimes 10 to 12 feet long. Report concludes that the critical edition of Ramayana belongs to the early iron age. " this is amply proved by the repeated references to weapons of ´Kalayasa´, Karsayasa´ and ´Ayasa´ definitely means iron and not copper. At that time in Jharkhand iron smelting by the Asur tribes was flourishing industry. "The iron chest (box) with eight wheels in which the bow of Rudra was kept and which Rama alone could wield, requires highly advanced iron technology.
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