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The Glorious Past of Kaushambi District

The new version of the ancient Kaushambi, which was frequently adored by the Buddha, is one of the holy places for the Buddhists all over the world. The old site of Kaushambi, one of the six most prosperous Indian cities in the Buddha's period, was visited by the Buddha in the 6th and 9th years after having attained enlightenment. During His both the visits, Lord Buddha delivered several sermons at Kaushambi, thereby making it a center of learning for the Buddhists. Although the modern Kaushambi is only a shadow of its glorious past and not as highlighted and developed as it used to be, but still it is considered to be one of the major pilgrimages for the Buddhists. The excavations conducted in the old Kaushambi suggests the presence of a huge prosperous city about 800 years back. The remains found from the city includes the Ashokan Pillar and the Ghositarma Monastery along with others such as Stone fortress palace, old coins, sculptures, monuments and idols. Besides, some of the stupas have also been found from the ruins of the old city. Dating back to 1000 CE, the holy temple of Sheetala Devi has always been of high religious importance for the Hindus. The temple, which is also one of the 51 Shaktipeeths, is considered to have extreme divine powers. The devotees believe that by offering prayers to the Goddess on 'Ashtami' day of 'Krishnapaksha' in the month of 'Chaitra', one can get rid of evils. Prabhasgiri is a small hillock in Kaushambi and holds religious importance for the Jains. In the small cave on the hill top, there are inscriptions in the Brahmi script, which dates back to the 2nd century BCE in the Gupta period. According to the Hindu mythology, it is said that it was at Prabhasgiri, where Lord Krishna died by the arrow of Jaratkumar.

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