After nearly a decade when I was traveling with the German Praktikum (internship) students through Elephants Pass, watching the same Lagoon where I crossed at midnights struck how things were changing the world over in an unbelievably short time.
While the German students were videoing the Lagoon, my mind recalled the once flourishing Nallur city off the coast of the Jaffna Lagoon, which was once the capital of the Naga kingdom. The Northern part of Sri Lanka throve during the Naga Kingdom from 6th century BC to the middle of the 3rd century AD. Nagas were of the Tibeto – Burman origin, a Mongoloid race and migrated to India 4000 BC, driven by some political disturbances from Central Asia through the North Eastern frontier of the Himalayan mountain range.
Nagas were a prominent non- Aryan race in India and their names are still preserved in various parts of India. The Indo – Aryan invasion in the Indian subcontinent had driven them South and they invaded further South towards Sri Lanka.
This may coincide with the theory of the Aryan invasion in the North- western sector of India and their expansion to other areas driving away the indigenous people of the Indus valley civilization, the Dravidians further south.
The Nagas were dependent on the sea for their living and established trade with India, and developed art and culture. They also worshipped serpents, which is in the icon of Lord Siva. Kudiramali, a place near Silapaththurai, a western coastal sleepy village off the Gulf of Mannar too was a seaport and a capital of the Naga race.
There are legendary stories about an “Alli” queen who ruled that area and had a great liking for pearls. Her warriors were women and she hated men. During her time pearls were exported to Arab countries and in return Arab horses were imported through this port. That is how that port derived its name Kudiramalai (Horse Mountain).
Due to natural causes the sea engulfed the Kudiramalai area probably by tidal waves caused either by a strong cyclone or earthquake.
Memories impinged on me of moments when I had visited a decade ago Queen Alli’s ruined palace. The roaring waves of the Gulf of Mannar were battering the walls of the ruined palace, which to a great extent was submerged by the sea.
Amazingly the ruined palace was still withstanding those mighty sea waves for some thousands years, though it has lost a major portions to the sea. When I stepped into the cave-like inside of it I marveled at the architecture of the upper portion of the wall’s entrance. Other than the walls, I hardly found anything inside but the vibrations of the battering waves outside of the wall, which was echoing inside in a mysterious way.
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Source by Rajkumar Kanagasingam
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