(Last Updated on : 22/05/2010)
The Daradas were a tribe of north-west India, well-known both to indigenous and to foreign traditions. They are referred to in the Mahabharata
as having joined the Kaurava forces, and as having been defeated by Vasudeva, along with the Khasas, Sakas, Yavanas, Trigarttas, Malavas and others. The Vishnu Purana
has associated them with the Abhiras and Kasmiras while in the Matsya Purana
the country of the Daradas is linked with Gandhara, Sivapura, Urja, Aurasa and other districts forming the basin of the Sindhu. The Epic and Puranic traditions seem therefore to locate the Daradas in the north-west along the north-west frontier of Kashmir, and contiguously with the realm of the Khasas in the upper Punjab
. They were probably a mountainous tribe, for 'mountain is the commonest meaning of the word darad from which they appear to have derived their name'. Daradas are known by several names by the historians. They are known as Dardae, Derdai, Dardanoi. Historians have said that the mountain that was present the country of the Daradas was of an unsurpassable height.
The Daradas were an important factor in the history of Kashmir, and are often referred to in the Rajatarangini. The country once inhabited by the Daradas still retains clear traces of the ancient name, being known as Dardistan, the district of the Dardo.
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