Give an account of the achievements of Ganapati Deva of Kakatiya dynasty
“Ganapathi Deva is one of the greatest rulers of Medieval India”._ M. Rama Rao and P.V. Parabrahma Sastry.
Ganapathi Deva ruled for more than six decades. During his life time Delhi Sultanate was established.
Ganapathi Deva’s contemporaries:
- All the slave dynasty kings and Jallaluddin Khilji were his contemporaries.
- Jaitrapala, Singama and Mahadeva of Yadava dynasty, Devagiri.
- Vira Bhallala I, Narasimha II of Hoyasala Dynasty, Dwara Samudra.
During his life time only in Northern India, Hindu political authority had suffered a serious setback due to the Turkish invasions and due to the defeat of Rajput confederacy. Muslim kings did not attack on South India during the reign of Ganapathi Deva. Due to this reason Ganapathi Deva could actively expand his kingdomin Andhra and Deccan regions.
His period witnessed glorious progress in every field. Due to this reason his period was unique in the History of Telugu people and Kakatiyas. His armies, Officials, people felt fortunate and proud due to his uninterrupted military achievements.
Ganapathi Deva was the son of Mahadeva and Bayyamba. Ganapathi Deva was a minor when Ganapathi Deva’s father was killed by Yadava Kings. He was imprisoned by the Yadava king.
Recharla Rudra kept the Kakatiya kingdom intact and with his diplomatic skill, he got Ganapathi Deva released from the captivity of Yadava Kings and enthroned Ganapathi Deva.
Ganapathi Deva expanded his kingdom in Coastal Andhra.
Military Achievements of Ganapathi Deva:
- Kakatiyas first attacked on Velanadu. Prithvishawara, the master of Coastal Andhra was the ruler of Velanadu when Ganapathi Deva attacked on it. Ganapathi Deva defeated Prithvishwara. Source: Bejawada epigraph of 1206.
- Kolan (Kolleru)
- Kota family (Prakasham Dist.)
- Konidena Telugu Cholas of Nellore, Kadapa, Chengalpat.
- Diviseema Ayya Kings Pinachoda and his son Jayapa. Though they were defeated, recognizing the abilities and caliber of the Ayya kings, Ganapathi Deva allowed them to rule their kingdom as his subordinates. Ganapathi Deva married two daughters of Pinachoda, Naraamba and Peramba. Young and dynamic Jayapa was taken into the army of Ganapathi Deva and was made Gajasahini (head of elephantry wing). Ganapathi Deva’s military general assumed the title ‘Divichoorakara’ to mark his victory over Divi rulers.
- 1206 – Velanaadu ruler Prithvishwara started disobeying Ganapathi Deva. Ganapathi Deva defeated him, occupied his Velanaadu Kingdom and appointed Jayapa as the governor of Velanaadu. Thus Godavari region came under the sway of Ganapathi Deva. – Source: Srikakulam inscription of 1206.
- 2017 – Fight with Cholas / Kulottunga III. Chola King Kulottunga III invaded on Nellore Telugu Cholas and defeated Manumasiddi in 1178. Kulottunga III installed Nallasiddi on the throne. Nallasiddi ruled as the subordinate of Kullottuna III. In 1208, Tikkana Somayaji, the prime minister and court poet of Manumasiddi visited Ganapati Deva and requested for help to enthrone Manumasiddi. Ganapathi Deva invaded on Nellore and enthroned Manumasiddi. Tikkana Somayaji dedicated his work ‘Nirvachanotthara Ramayanamu’ to Ganapathi Deva.
- After successfully restoring Manumasiddi, Ganapathi Deva invaded and defeated Kalinga king. Induloori Somayya, the military general of Ganapati Deva played a prominent role in this victory. Induloori Somayya was appointed as the governor of Kolanu.
- 1238 – Again for second time Kakatiya king attacked on Kalinga and defeated Narasimha Deva.
Ganapati Deva handed over the throne to Rudrama Devi and continued to guide her.