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12th century Buddhist inscription found

A new inscription that sheds more light on the history of Buddhism in Karnataka has been discovered at Lakkundi village in Gadag district.

Research scholar Hanumakshi Godi, who traced this inscription on a private property, said that it was for the first time that an inscription related to Buddhism was found in Lakkundi, a place of antiquarian interest with nearly 50 temples, 101 stepped wells and a large number of inscriptions spread over the Chalukya, Kalachuri, Seuna and Hoysala periods.

The inscription, whose lower portion has been severed off, makes salutations to Lord Buddha, ‘dhamma’, ‘sangha’ and Tara Bhagavati.

There are possibilities of the inscription speaking about donations to a Buddhist monastery located at Lakkundi. Besides, it was among a handful of inscriptions making specific reference to the Tara Bhagavati cult of the Vajrayana Buddhism.

The period of this inscription could be assigned to the regime of Hoysala king Veeraballala II (1173–1220 CE).