of Andhra Pradesh
Andhra has a great ancient history with several references in
epics like Mahabharata,
and Buddhist Jataka Tales.
Early Andhra Pradesh
earliest historical evidence can be seen in the writings of
Megasthenes, who visited the Court of Chandragupta Maurya (322-297
BC). Buddhist books reveal that Andhras established their kingdoms
Valley at that time. Ashoka referred in his 13th rock edict (232
BCE) that Andhra was under his rule.
next dynasty that ruled Andhra Pradesh was the Satavahana dynasty
(2nd century BC to 2nd century A.D), also known as the Andhras. They
were ruling much of central and southern India at that time. They
established their capital at Amravati on the banks of river Krishna.
They were very much indulged in international trade with both
eastern Asia and Europe. The Satavahana kings were followers of
Buddhism and they worked towards the welfare of this religion. After
the fall of Satavahanas, Andhra Pradesh was ruled by many small
dynasties. Among these small dynasties, the popular one was the
Andhra achieved an identity and a distinction of its own in the
reign of the Eastern and Western Chalukyas, the Rashtrakutas and the
early Cholas. By the end of the 12th century, there were several
local kingdoms, namely the Hoysalas, Kakatiyas and Yadavas. The 12th
and the 13th centuries saw the emergence of the Kakatiyas. The
Kakatiya temples, dedicated mostly to Shiva, reveal in their
construction a blending of the styles of North India and South India
which influenced the political life of the Deccan. The empire
reached its peak under the king Krishnadevaraya in the early part of
16th century. Telugu literature reached new heights during this
time. Excellent Vijayanagar monuments were built across South India
including Lepakshi, Tirupathi and Sri Kalahasthi in Andhra Pradesh.
This dynasty had to face several Muslim invasions. Later on, after
the demolition of Hampi, the kings of Hindu Vijayanagar kingdom,
shifted their base to Chandragiri near Tirupati.
A grand alliance
of the sultanates of Ahmadnagar, Bijapur, Golconda and Bihar was
formed and the Vijayanagar army was defeated on 23rd January, 1565
by the Deccan sultans at the battle of Talikota. Subsequently, in
the middle of 16th century, the Muslim Qutb Shahi dynasty emerged.
The foundation of the modern city of Hyderabad was laid by the Qutub
Shahis of Golcunda. They were defeated by the son of the Moghal
emperor Aurangzeb in 1687, who seized Golconda. He appointed Asaf
Jah the governor of Deccan. Later, when the Mughal Empire was
decaying under Aurangzeb's successors, the Asaf Jahis were
collecting power to become independent rulers under the title of
Nizam. Five years after the death of Aurangzeb, in 1707, Hyderabad
was declared independent by its Viceroy and thus, established the
Asaf Jahi dynasty of Nizams. The Nizams helped the British against
Tipu Sultan of Mysore and therefore they were rewarded a certain
degree of autonomy even at the time when the British dominated all
India. The Nizams were also involved in the Anglo-French wars in the
Deccan. But, finally they had enter into a subsidiary alliance with
the British in 1800.
Andhra Pradesh was one of the first states in India which was formed
only on the linguistic basis. After India's independence the Telugu-speaking people were distributed in about 21 districts.
Out of them 9 were in the Nizam's Dominions and 12 in the Madras
Presidency. On October 1, 1953, 11 districts
of the Madras State were consolidated to form a new Andhra State
with Kurnool as capital. Later, on November 1, 1956 the State
Reorganization Commission recommended to enlarge the Andhra State by
adding nine districts which were in the Nizam's Dominion. The city
of Hyderabad, became the capital of the enlarged Andhra Pradesh.
On June 2, 2014, Andhra Pradesh was bifurcated into two states,
Telangana and residual Andhra Pradesh. Almost all of the original
Nizam dominion territories went back into the new Telangana stage,
including the capital city of Hyderabad. Andhra Pradesh is now
planning a new capital city somewhere near Vijayawada.