DMPQ- Evaluate the effective Pala Administration

Pala Dynasty administration was Monarchial and King or Monarch was the centre of all power. Pala rulers adopted Imperial titles like Parameshwar, Paramvattaraka, and Maharajadhiraja. They appointed Prime Ministers and the Line of Garga served as the Prime Ministers of the Palas for 100 years. Pala Empire was divided into separate Vuktis (Provinces), Vuktis into Vishaya (Divisions) and Mandalas (Districts). Darvapani, Someshwar, Kedarmisra, Vatt Guravmisra smaller units were Khandala, Bhaga, Avritti, Chaturaka, and Pattaka. Their Administration covered widespread area from the grass root level to the imperial court.

 

Palas Army was fourfold and the army consisted of: infantry, cavalry, elephants and chariots. Vatsaraja Dharmapala had been mentioned as the owner of unlimited number of horses, elephants and chariots in the copperplates. It is amazing to know that Kings of Bengal still depended on Four-Horsed Heavy Chariots as when the use of chariots had been backdated in India and other parts of the world. Palas had to depend upon their vassal kings for war horses. As being a riverine land and swarthy climate Bengal region was not good enough for breeding quality war-horses. The inscriptions on Pala Copper plates reveal that mercenary forces were recruited from the Kamboja, Khasa, Huna, Malwa, Gujarat, and Karnataka.

The Kamboja cavalry was the cream of the Pala Empires armed forces. The Kamboja forces of Pala Dynasty maintained smaller confederates (Sanghas) among themselves and obedient followers of their commander. Palas divided the army into following posts: Senapati or Mahasenapati (General) controlling foot soldiers, cavalry, soldiers riding elephants and camels, navy, and the various army posts like Kottapala (Fort guards) and Prantapala (Border guards). Palas had a huge army and the legend of “Nava Lakkha Shainya” (Nine lac soldiers) were popular during the reigns of Dharmapala and Devapala.

Nevertheless, the successors of Mahipala were not as capable as he was, and the empire began to decline once more. The last Pala ruler of note was Ramapala, who ruled between the 11th and 12th centuries AD. Like Mahipala, he was somewhat successful in reversing the fortunes of the Pala Empire, though not long after his death, the Pala Empire was replaced by the Sena Empire.

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