Water management in the Vijaynagar empire - Paper presented at the National Seminar on Water and Culture (2007)

The ancient systems were built with a reverence for the environment and water. Understanding these from the Vijaynagar Empire

This paper focuses on water management techniques used in two tanks constructed by the kings of the Vijaynagar Empire.

The first example taken, is that of the Anantraj Sagar built by the son of the minister of Harihar. The lake is still in use and there are inscriptions on stone near it which provide a thumb rule to constructing lakes. Construction of this lake began in 1369 and was completed in 2 years. The paper states that the length of the dam was 5000 dand, width was 8 dand and the height was 7 dand (One dand is about one metre).

The second example taken is that of the Krishnadeva Sagar. The author discusses how the king diverted the Tungabhadra river, which resulted in increase in agriculture and revenue for the state. There is also mention of how ancient Portuguese travellers to this kingdom, may have misrepresented the technical prowess of the kingdom in the use of limestone, in their recordings to show the kingdom in bad light due to their vested interests.

The author ends by providing proof that ancient India was well versed in the use of limestone in a variety of structures.

This paper was presented at the National Seminar on Water and Culture organised by Kannada University and Sahayoga in 2007.

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