Samprati was the son of his blind father Kunala. He succeeded his cousin, Dasharatha as emperor of the Mauryan Empire. Samprati was brought up in Ujjain. Both the father and son were denied the throne. Kunala and Samprati approached the court of Ashoka in an attempt to claim the throne. He could not deliver the throne to his blind son, but was impressed by Samprati's skills and declared Samprati as the successor to Dasharatha. He inherited the throne after Dasharatha's death.
As per the the Jain tradition he ruled for 53 years. He was influenced by the teachings of a Jain monk, Suhastin. He had also sent Jain scholars overseas to spread teachings of Jainism. According to the Jaina text Parisistaparvan he ruled both from Pataliputraand Ujjain.
He is considered as the "Jain Ashoka" for his efforts in spreading Jainism in east India. Samprati Vihar is named after Samprati and it existed at Vadamanu in the Krishna Valley during the second century. Samprati spread Jainism through all possible methods and also worked hard for its scriptures too. He also got the old and the existing temples repaired and set up in all of them holy statues made of gold, stone, silver, brass and of a mixture of fine metals and performed their Anjankala ceremony. This ceremony makes them fit for worship. It is believed that he built thousands of Jain Temples many of which are used like the Jain temples at Viramgam and Palitana (Gujarat), Agar Malwa (Ujjain). He built one hundred and twenty-five thousand new temples, repaired thirty-six thousand temples and twelve and a half million idols and sanctified ninety-five thousand metal structures within three and a half years.
It is also believed that he erected Jain temples throughout his territory. He also laid the foundation of Jain monasteries even in non-Aryan territories too. He had no children.
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(Last Updated on : 09-11-2011)
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