Tuluva Narasa Nayaka
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Tuluva Narasa Nayaka a Bunt Chieftain (died 1503) was Vijayanagar commander as his father Tuluva Ishvara Nayaka a Bunt Chieftain and also prime minister. After the death of king Saluva Narasimha in 1491, crown prince Thimma Bhupala was murdered by an army commander. The faithful Narasa Nayaka then crowned the other prince, Narasimha Raya II but retained all administrative powers in order to bring stability to the kingdom. He was called the rakshakarta (protector) and svami (Lord). He held the offices of the senadhipati (commander-in-chief), the mahapradhana (Prime Minister) and the karyakarta (agent) of the king. He successfully kept the Bahamani Sultans and the Gajapatis away from the kingdom and quelled many rebellions by unfaithful chieftains, trying to exert their independence.
Victory in the South
During the time 1463 when Vijayanagar was ruled by Saluva Narasimha, the region south of Kaveri river had slipped out of Vijayanagar control when the king was busy protecting interests closer to the capital. In 1496, Narasa Nayaka marched south and brought under control rebellious chiefs like the governor of Trichi and Tanjore. The whole area south of Kaveri to Cape Comorin was brought under control. The chiefs of Chola, Chera, Madurai area, Heuna or Hoysala chief of Srirangapatna and Gokarna on the west coast were brought under Vijayanagar empire control in one long successful campaign which ended in 1497.
In 1496, Gajapati king Prataparudra attacked Vijayanagar and advanced up to Pennar but Narasa Nayaka held out and succeeded in a stalemate.
Narasa Nayaka wasted little time in stabilizing the kingdom. The Bahamani kingdom by now was breaking up into smaller independent chiefdoms. Qasim Barid, a Bahamani minister offered Narasa Nayaka the forts of Raichur and Mudgal in return for help in defeating Yusuf Adil Khan of Bijapur. According to writings by Ferishta, Narasa Nayaka sent an army to the Raichur doab area that devastated the area in the doab. Yusuf Adil lost this part of the doab and repeated attempts to recover it failed. Having failed to defeat him in battle, Yusuf Adil Khan invited Narasa Nayaka to Bijapur on a peace offering and had Narasa Nayaka and seventy high-ranking officers murdered. However, it was only in 1502 that the wily ruler of Bijapur could recover the doab region for Vijayanagar empire.
Death and succession
Towards the end of his rule, Tuluva Narasa Nayaka had effectively carried on the dream of his king, Saluva Narasimha Deva Raya in protecting the empires interests. He built a robust administration and an effective army. He had regained control over large domains in South India and kept the Bahamani Sultans and the Gajapatis at bay and brought the rebellious chiefs under control, making way for the golden era of Vijayanagara under his talented and able son Krishnadevaraya. After his death in 1503, he was succeeded by his eldest son Viranarasimha Raya as a regent of the empire who proclaimed himself king in 1505.
- Majumdar, R.C. (2006). The Delhi Sultanate, Mumbai: Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan, p.306
- Dr. Suryanath U. Kamat, Concise History of Karnataka, 2001, MCC, Bangalore (Reprinted 2002)
- Prof K.A. Nilakanta Sastry, History of South India, From Prehistoric times to fall of Vijayanagar, 1955, OUP, New Delhi (Reprinted 2002)
Saluva Narasimha Deva Raya