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Saindhava of Ghumli
c. 740 CE–920 CE
CapitalBhutamabilika (now Ghumli, Gujarat, India)
Common languagesSanskrit, Prakrit
Hinduism, Jainism, Buddhism
• Established
c. 740 CE
• Disestablished
920 CE
Preceded by
Succeeded by
Chudasama Dynasty
Today part ofGujarat,  India

The Saindhavas ruled western part of Saurashtra (now in Gujarat, India) from c. 740 CE to 920 CE, probably in alliance with Maitrakas. The known historical events during their rule are the attack of Arabs repulsed by Agguka I and their insignificant wars with Chapa rulers of Wadhwan.[1]

Source of information[edit]

Saindhava is located in Gujarat
Vallabhi or Vala
Vallabhi or Vala
Find spots of inscriptions issued during the Saindhava rule.[2] The dynasty mainly ruled western parts of Saurashtra region of Gujarat (modern Jamnagar, Devbhoomi Dwarka, Rajkot, Morbi and Porbandar districts).

Total fifteen copper plates issued by them helps to establish their genealogy as well as provides useful information about the dynasty.[2][3] Six grants inscribed in 12 copper plates were discovered while digging on roadside in Ghumli in 1936. The earliest reference of them was found in Navsari copperplate of Chalukya governor of Lata region (modern-day South Gujarat) Avanijanashraya Pulakeshin dated 738-39 CE which enlisted the dynasties defeated by Arabs and finally repelled by him. The eighth verse in Gwalior prashasti of Bhojadeva describes the Saindhava ruler defeated by Pratihara king Nagabhatta. One more copper plate issued by Jaika was recovered from Morbi. A clay seal referring to Pushyena was recovered from Vallabhi (Vala). One more from Dhinki issued by Jaikadeva (purportedly from 738 CE) was found as a forgery later.[2]


They were probably originated from Sindh (now in Pakistan) who moved southward and established themselves in northwestern region of Saurastra peninsula.[4] The Plate F of Ghumli issued by Jaika II describes their family as Jayadratha-vamsa. It is probably because the last ruler wanted to associate his family with Jayadratha of Sindhu Kingdom in epic Mahabharata. It was a common practice to associate royal family with Puranic heroes in 9th-10th century. Other plates describes themselves as Saindhavas as they originated from Sindh.[2]


Jayadratha vansha or Saindhava vansha is known from the copper plate grants issued by them. They ruled western Saurashtra in an allegiance with the Maitrakas of Vallabhi. Their capital was at Bhutambilika or Bhumlika (now Ghumli) in Barda hills.[1][2]

The early three kings Pusyadeva or Pusyena, Krishnaraja I, and Agguka I were ruling during Maitraka period. The later post-Maitraka rulers were probably vassals of Gurjara-Pratiharas. At the height of their rule, the controlled a small region compared to Maitrakas. They ruled Halar and Sorath regions constituting western part of Saurashta peninsula (modern Jamnagar, Devbhoomi Dwarka, Rajkot, Morbi and Porbandar districts in Gujarat, India).[1][2]

Their emblem was fish, the sign of Varuna and suitable for their naval supremacy.[4][2]


Genealogical tree of Saindhavas (prepared in 1929)

The earliest known chief of family was Ahivarmana whose son was Pushyena or Pushyadeva. Pushyadeva was defeated by Arabs fighting for Umayyad Caliphate in 739 CE. He was also defeated by Dantidurga of Rastrakuta dynasty. He was succeeded by his son Krishnaraja I who flourished in the third quarter of the 8th century. His son Agguka I succeeded him in the fourth quarter of the 8th century. During his rule, the Arabs again tried to establish themselves in the Saurashtra. In 759 CE, Hasham was appointed as the governor of Sindh who sent an Arab naval fleet under Amarubin Jamal to attack to the coast of Barda region. It was defeated by the Saindhava naval fleet, which was then leading naval power of western India. Twenty years later, another Arab naval fleet was sent, which initially succeeded in capturing a town near Barda. The campaign was withdrawn following an outbreak of an epidemic, according to Arab sources[which?] tell. They also state that the Caliph decided to never enter India from there again. But Agguka I's inscriptions state that he had severely defeated the Arabs in 776 CE and they had to withdraw.[1][2][5][6][3] He took the title Apara Samudradhipati, "Master of the Sea".[7]

Agguka's son and successor Ranaka I was defeated by Ramabhadra, the general of Gurjara-Pratihara king Nagabhata II, who conquered the western Saurashtra. Agguka was succeeded by his son Krishnaraja II who flourished in the second quarter of the 9th century. During his rule, the wars between the Saindhavas and the Chapa rulers of Vardhamana (Wadhwan) began. He was succeeded by his infant son Agguka II with his step-brother Jaika I was his regent. In later life, Agguka disposed of his nephew and ruled himself. He continued his battles with Chapas. His sons were Chamundaraja and Agguka III. Chamundraraja succeeded him followed by his younger brother Agguka III. Agguka III was succeeded by his son Ranaka II. Sometime before 886 CE, Ranaka II was succeeded by Agguka IV, son of Chamundaraja. He was succeeded by Jaika II (r. 904 - 920 CE). He was the last known ruler. The Ranaka Bashkaladeva copper plate inscription dated 987 CE indicates that he was probably vassal of Chaulukyas of Patan and ruled "Jyeshthukadesha", a region around Ghumli. But the inscription does not refer to Saindhavas or their descendants. It is assumed that between 920 CE and 987 CE, the rule of the Saindhavas ended.[8] Saindhava kingdom was captured by Graharipu, the Abhira/Chudasama[9] chief according to Sailendranath Sen. Ghumli continued to serve as the capital under the dynasty known as Jethvas, the term probably originating from Jayadratha, Jyeshtha (the elder branch) or Jyeshthuka from which the region derived its name Jyeshthukadesha.[1][8][2][5][3]

List of rulers[edit]

Saindhava coin
Two sides of a coin. The front contains a bust and the back contains stylized fire.
a bust turned right of Indo-Sassanian style with points. a stylized fire.
A drachma of the Saindhava or Chalukya dynasties dating from about 800-950 in silver.
Dimension: 14 mm
Weight 4 g.

Their genealogy is as following:[2][5][3]

  • Pushyena or Pushyadeva (r. c. 734 - c. 754)
  • Krishnaraja I (r. c. 754 - c. 774)
  • Agguka I (r. c. 774 - c. 794)
  • Ranaka I (r. c. 794 - c. 814)
  • Krishnaraja II (r. c. 814 - c. 824, vassals of Pratihara after c. 820)
  • Agguka II (r. c. 824 - c. 834 under regency of his uncle Jaika I, c. 834 - c. 859)
  • Jaika I (r. c. 834 -c. 849) followed by Ranaka II (r. c. 859 - c. 879) as minor ruler
  • Chamundaraja (r. c. 849 - c. 869) and Agguka IV as minor ruler (c. 849 - c. 869)
  • Agguka III (r. c. 874 - c. 899) and Ranaka III as minor ruler (c. 869 - c. 889)
  • Jaika II (r. c. 899 - c. 919) and Jaika III as minor ruler (c. 899 - c. 909)


Their notable constructions are Hindu monastery (mathika) at Ghumli and temples dedicated to Surya, Shiva and Shakti (Goddess) at Suvarnamanjari. The inscriptions referring to temples are scarce. The temples constructed in this period follows the contemporary and earlier traditions of Maitrakas.[1]


  1. ^ a b c d e f Nanavati, J. M.; Dhaky, M. A. (1969-01-01). "The Maitraka and the Saindhava Temples of Gujarat". Artibus Asiae. Supplementum. 26: 3–83. doi:10.2307/1522666.
  2. ^ a b c d e f g h i j Altekar, A. S. (1929). "Six Saindhava Copper-Plate Grants from Ghumli". In Bhandarkar, D. R. Epigraphia Indica. XXVI. Culcutta: University of Culcutta. pp. 185–226.
  3. ^ a b c d Vyas, Surendra (31 December 2001). "10. Bhutaamblika". A study of ancient towns of Gujarat (PhD). Department of Archaeology and Ancient History, Maharaja Sayajirao University of Baroda. pp. 123–127. hdl:10603/72127. Retrieved 9 May 2017.
  4. ^ a b Derryl N. MacLean (1989). Religion and Society in Arab Sind. BRILL. p. 20. ISBN 90-04-08551-3.
  5. ^ a b c Sailendra Nath Sen (1 January 1999). Ancient Indian History and Civilization. New Age International. pp. 343–344. ISBN 978-81-224-1198-0.
  6. ^ Kumar, Amit (2012). "Maritime History of India: An Overview". Maritime Affairs:Journal of the National Maritime Foundation of India. Taylor & Francis. 8 (1): 93–115. doi:10.1080/09733159.2012.690562. In 776 AD, Arabs tried to invade Sind again but were defeated by the Saindhava naval fleet. A Saindhava inscription provides information about these naval actions.
  7. ^ K. Sridharan (1 January 2000). Sea: Our Saviour. Taylor & Francis. p. 13. ISBN 978-81-224-1245-1.
  8. ^ a b Sarkar, D. C. (1960). "No.2 Ghumli Plate of Bashkaladeva, V.S. 1045". In Sarkar, D. C. Epigraphia Indica. XXXI. Culcutta: Department of Archaeology, Government of India. p. 13.
  9. ^ R. E. Enthoven. The Tribes and Castes of Bombay. Asian Educational Services. p. 25. ISBN 978-81-206-0630-2.