Yavana Indragnidatta of Dattamitri

Written by Alok Mohan on July 12, 2022. Posted in Uncategorized

Nasik Cave Inscription No.-18 of Yavana Indragnidatta of Dattamitri.

Inscription number-154

Provenance: Nasik, Nasik District, Maharashtra..
Script: Brahmi of Second Century AD.
Language: Prakrit
References: Journal of Bombay Branch of the Royal Asatic Society-VII, pp.37 ff, Bhagwanlal Indraji, Mumbai Gazetteer XVI, pp. 544 ff., Buhler, Ach.
Survey of western India, pp. 180 ff. E Senart EP.Ind. VIII, pp-90-91.
English Translation of the inscription
Success ! This gift of Indragnidatta, the Yavana, a northerner from from Dattamitri. By the (aforementioned) devout person, this cave has been caused to be excavated in mount
Trirasmi and inside the cave a chaity-grih and a step well (or cisterns).
This Cave made for the sake. (in honour) of his mother and father has been, in order to honor all Buddha’s, bestowed on the universal Sangha of monks, together with his son Dharmarakshita.
(The term Yavana, here, is derived from the prakrit word Yona, which in turn is
derived from Persian Yauna)
1. The script resembles that of other Nasik Inscription of Nahapana (119-124 AD).
2. From the facsimile in Ep.Ind. VIII, Plate V, Number.18
(Opp. pp.82)
3. Senart: इंद्राग्निदतस

Senart refers to a varttika on Panini,
IV.7.104. which preserves the tradition of a word auttaraha, for which the
etymology from Uttara seems to indicate the meaning northern. But this reference being evidently wrong,
since no adhyaya of Panini has more than 4 Padas, I could not trace the varttika. Sanskrit ओोत्तराह (उत्तरे : हिन भव 🙂
means belonging to the next day. ओतराह here is evidently the Prakrit form of ओोत्तरापध
2. Identified by Buhler. “Arch. Survey West India” pp.38, with the city of Demetrias mentioned by Isidore of charex.
3. An oratory at the end of which a stupa is erected as the object or centre of Worship.

The Yavanas (Sanskrit) and Yonas (Pali) are frequently mentioned words in history of ancient India especially the inscriptions from so-called mythical age. They are also being referred in the Buddhist scriptures, texts, Manu Smruti, Dharmasastras, Puranas etc.
During Asoka’s time several Yonas were subjects of his dominion.

Many Yavanas probably came to the Western part of India consequent to Kshatrapa invasions during second century A.D. According to the inscriptional records, Yavana and Sakas artists had also been working at the ancient sites of western India.

But as far as this cave is concerned, it is likely that the donor Indragnidatta, a Yavanas from Demetrias, would have desired to have a chaitya-cum-vihara at Nasik.
The credit of introduction of this kind of architecture during first century A.D.in western India, ie the combination of a stupa shrine with the vihara goes to Indraggnidatta, as this is empirical evidences in the form of combination of chaitya and vihara structures in Nasik. The beginning of the second century A.D. therefore marks an important phase in the development of rock-cut chaityas.
During this period, Kshtrapas were in dominant position in entire Western India. They had conquered some of the Satavahana territories and were slowly getting naturalized in their adopted land. . They had patronized Buddhism as is evident from these caves, though
Siva, Visnu, Ganesa, Sankarsana, Vasudeva, Dharma, Indra, the Sun and the Moon figure as
the popular Hindu deities during this period. Ancient temples dedicated to these deities existed, in ancient caves of western India.
This cave was a gift of one Indragnidatta, who hailed from Demeterias in Gandhara region.

Alok Mohan

The admin, Alok Mohan, is a graduate mechanical engineer & possess following post graduate specializations:- M Tech Mechanical Engineering Production Engineering Marine engineering Aeronautical Engineering Computer Sciences Software Engineering Specialization He has authored several articles/papers, which are published in various websites & books. Studium Press India Ltd has published one of his latest contributions “Standardization of Education” as a senior author in a book along with many other famous writers of international repute. Alok Mohan has held important positions in both Govt & Private organisations as a Senior professional & as an Engineer & possess close to four decades accomplished experience. As an aeronautical engineer, he ensured accident incident free flying. As leader of indian team during early 1990s, he had successfully ensured smooth induction of Chukar III PTA with Indian navy as well as conduct of operational training. As an aeronautical engineer, he was instrumental in establishing major aircraft maintenance & repair facilities. He is a QMS, EMS & HSE consultant. He provides consultancy to business organisations for implimentation of the requirements of ISO 45001 OH & S, ISO 14001 EMS & ISO 9001 QMS, AS 9100, AS9120 Aero Space Standards. He is a qualified ISO 9001 QMS, ISO 14001 EMS, ISO 45001 OH & S Lead Auditor (CQI/IRCA recognised certification courses) & HSE Consultant. He is a qualified Zed Master Trainer & Zed Assessor. He has thorough knowledge of six sigma quality concepts & has also been awarded industry 4, certificate from the United Nations Industrial Development Organisation Knowledge Hub Training Platform  He is a Trainer, a Counselor, an Advisor and a Competent professional of cross functional exposures. He has successfully implimented requirements of various international management system standards in several organizations. He is a dedicated technocrat with expertise in Quality Assurance & Quality Control, Facility Management, General Administration, Marketing, Security, Training, Administration etc. He is a graduate mechanical engineer with specialization in aeronautical engineering. He is always eager to be involved in imparting training, implementing new ideas and improving existing processes by utilizing his vast experience.