Thursday, March 1, 2012

Hydaspes the great

We dwelled on its banks for ages 
We moved, we grooved across its waters 
We played, we basked in its glory 
We relished its blessing 
But trembled in fear when its waters showed the might 
We never thanked back when it came for help after witnessing our plight
Its flow has swept away countless bludgeons too
The times it turned green, at times orange, red or blue 
It saw their might on its shores
It saw Qadeer thumping his enormity
It also saw fists that were held high
Its turns and twists hold zillions of tales
Only Almighty knows about their fate
Hydaspes the Great!
Most of us know Jhelum as Vitasta (Sanskrit) or Vyeth (Kashmiri). Not many know that ancient Greek had named the river as Hydaspes. The River Hydaspes is the Jhelum of modern-day Kashmir. Hydaspes (Jhelum) rises from a spring at Verinag situated at the foot of the Pir Panjal mountain range in the south-eastern part of the valley of Kashmir. It flows through Srinagar and the Wular lake before entering Pakistan through a deep narrow gorge. 
The river was regarded as a god by the ancient Greeks, as were most mountains and streams. Other rivers of the east, personified by the Greeks, included the Indian Ganges, and Assyrian Tigris and Euphrates.

The Battle of the Hydaspes
The Battle of the Hydaspes River was fought by Alexander the Great in 326 BC against King Porus of the Hindu Paurava kingdom on the banks of the Hydaspes River (Jhelum River) in the Punjab near Bhera in what is now modern-day Pakistan. The battle resulted in a complete Macedonian victory and the annexation of the Punjab, which lay beyond the confines of the defeated Persian empire, into the Alexandrian Empire.
Presently, the waters of the Jhelum are allocated to Pakistan under the terms of the Indus Waters Treaty.

3 comments:

W @ Rich Autumns said...

Porus lost battle with Alexander. The legend has it that when Porus was presented before Alexander after being captured, Alexander asked him how should he (Alexander) treat him? To this Porus replied, "As kings treat a king". Alexander was so impressed by the reply, that he let Porus retain him dominion.

Majid Pandit said...

Thank you for sharing. I also have been hearing about this incident since my school days but couldn't find much to read about the retention of the dominion in such a way.

W @ Rich Autumns said...

You're most welcome. I too have heard the legend, and found that various online sources recite different versions. It may or may not have happened in such a way, but the legend is fascinating enough.

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