KRISHNA-3, 939-967 A.D. (Rashtrakuta Dynasty)

Krishna-3, also known as Kannara is one of the best and most valiant monarchs of the Rashtrakuta dynasty which ruled from MaanaykheTa. He was known more for his military ability and administrative skills rather than his patronage of arts and culture. He ascended the throne after Amoghavarsha-3 with the able support of his brother-in-law BUtuga-2. He waged a war against ParAntaka COLa, a cOla king and won a decisive battle at takkOLam in North Arcott district. His unconquered march moved right up to Tanjore and then on to Rameshvaram. This victory is narrated in Somadeva's writing Yashatilaka Champu of 959 as well. Entire region between Kanchi to Tanjore came under his control. He defeated the Pandya kings who controlled Kerala and Simhala kings with the able support of BUtuga.

After these victories in the South he had to turn his attention to the north and he had to encounter the cAndElas of bundElKanD as well as GUrjara prtihArAs of the north. He defeated them ably assisted by Marasimha-2, a son of BUtuga. The king of mALava also conceded defeat. The northernmost Kannada inscription of the Rashtrakutas, dated about 964 is the Jura record (near Jabalpur) in present-day Madhya Pradesh. The details of these victories are inscribed in this inscription. Later on he interceded in the affairs of ‘vengimanDala’ in favour of bADappa-2 against dAnArNava and was successful at least temporarily. At his peak, he ruled a vast empire stretching from the Narmada river in the north to the Kaveri river delta in the south. A copper grant of 993 issued by the Shilahara king of Thana claims the Rashtrakuta control extended from the Himalayas(?)(Vindhya?) in the north to Ceylon in the south and from the eastern sea to the western seas.(?) The grant states that when King Krishna III mobilised his armies, the kings of Chola, Bengal, Kannauj, Andhra and Pandya regions used to quiver.

Krishna had many poets and artists in his royal court. Kannada poet Ponna who is well known for his ‘Shantipurana’, Gajankusha also Narayana who wrote a text on erotica, and Pushpadanta the Apabramsha poet who composed ‘Mahapuraana’ are a few among them. Krishneshvara and Gandamarthandaditya temples were built by him in Rameshvaram to celebrate his conquest.

Krishna-3 had a number of titles such as ‘akAlavarSa’, ‘vallaBanarEndra’, pruthvIvallaBa’, ‘kanchiyum tonDeyum konDa.


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