(Last Updated on : 17/02/2009)
It is said that Gangas were Kshatriyas of Soryavamsa. Some scholars refer them as Kanvayana Brahmins. According to some scholars Gangas lived at the bank of river Gangas and Muru Kaoya was the first man of their dynasty. In the fourth century A. D., Didiga Konganivarman and Madhava laid the foundation of their kingdom, which was called as Gangavadi later on.
Near about 605 A.D. a famous king named Durvinita came to the throne of Ganga dynasty. He fought against the Pallavas and is credited with many victories. He ruled up to 650 A. D. Durvinita was a great scholar. He translated a book named 'Brahatakatha' into Sanskrit. This book was written by Gunadya in Paisachi language. Some other books are also attributed to him.
Durvinita's successors were weak and incapable. It is not known much about them. Then a famous king named Sri Pursha came to the throne in 726 A. D. He fought many wars against the Rastrakutas and also defeated the Pallavas. He died near about 776 A. D. and thereafter this dynasty had to face many difficulties as well. They were attacked by the Rastrakutas and the Chalukyas of Vengu In 780 A. D. Ganga king Nrapati was made a prisoner by the Rashtrakuta king Dhruva. The Gangas again tried several times to free themselves from the clutches of the Rashtrakutas but were suppressed by them. Gangavadi turned into a province of the Rashtrakutas.
However, in 818 A. D. Rajamalla Ganga again made Gangavadi an independent state. But he was constantly troubled by the Rashtrakutas. A furious struggle continued among the Chalukyas, Gangas and the Cholas and in about 1004, A. D. the Cholas conquered their kingdom and put an end to their rule.
Many kings of the Ganga dynasty were the followers of Jain religion. A famous Jain preacher was the teacher or Guru of Ganga king Aviniti. Durvinita was also a follower of Jain religion. Rajamala IV's general Chamundaraja built a huge statue of Gomtesvara near about 943 A. D. in Sfavana Bela-Gola.